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STEFAN SCHULTZE LARGE ENSEMBLE ~ TED THE BELLHOP
WHYPLAYJAZZ 033 (Barcode: 4250459991336) ~ GERMANY ~ Jazz

Recorded: 2014 Released: 2017

This is the second orchestral / Big Band album by the German pianist / composer Stefan SchultzeFind albums by this artist released on the WhyPlayJazzFind albums on this label label and his third recording with the Large EnsembleFind albums by this artist. The music is performed by an eighteen piece orchestra and Schultze composed five of the six extended pieces the album presents. The remaining piece was composed by Carla BleyFind albums by this artist. Schultze himself does not play on this album. The Chinese sheng player Wu WeiFind albums by this artist guests on one track.

The music is a brilliant amalgam of Jazz sub-genres and orchestral sound, which characterizes the European approach to Big Band music, which although powerfully swinging, is able to extend the idiom in many different directions, often simultaneously, encapsulating decades of the Big Band tradition and European instrumental music.

The compositions, although melody based, are very modern and always fascinating. Schultze wrote intricate and masterly woven arrangements, which present the full scale of possibilities of the Big Band and the many balances existing between the orchestra´s sections, the soloists and the overall sound.

The performances by all the musicians involved in this project are absolutely stunning, especially so in view of the complexity of the music and the challenges it presents both to the ensemble players and the soloists.

Overall this is a brilliant album from start to finish, especially so in view of the fact that Big Bands are almost extinct on the contemporary Jazz scene, a sad reflection of the cultural climate today. Both the music and the performances are inspired and highly aesthetic, which makes this album an absolute delight for all Big Band enthusiasts and in fact all Jazz connoisseurs. A must!
Updated: 06/06/2017Posted: 06/06/2017CD 1 Mini-Sleeve Recommend To A Friend

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