CD Reviews

Music on the Web (UK)

Webmaster: Len Mullenger

[ Jazz index ] [Nostalgia index]  [ Classical MusicWeb ] [ Gerard Hoffnung ]

Reviewers: Don Mather, Dick Stafford, Marc Bridle, John Eyles, Ian Lace, Colin Clarke, Jack Ashby




ECM 1818 017 070-2

Teje Rypdal - guitar
Palle Mikkelborg - trumpet
Iver Kleive - organ
Aschild Stubo Gundersen - soprano

Bergen Chamber Ensemble
Kjell Seim - conductor
Recorded live at Molde Jazzfestival
Domkirke, July 19, 2000

1. 1st Movement Luminous Galaxy
2. 2nd Movement Fjelldapen
3. 3rd Movement Escalator
4. 4th Movement Toccata
5. 5th Movement Lux Aeterna

This is a most unusual disc. It is an amalgam of styles and could so easily fall into one of many categories. Perhaps the easiest way to describe it is as a meeting of rock influenced contemporary jazz with highly orchestrated modern classical music. The terms that come to mind to illustrate the character of the music contained herein are ethereal and impressionistic whilst at the same time being highly evocative, even at times romantic.

The mix is such that the frontline instruments are always understated and that the orchestral parts are allowed equal prominence. Rypdal is obviously a highly gifted composer and arranger, to say nothing of his instrumental ability. The pieces were commissioned by the Molde Jazz Festival to celebrate the newly installed organ in Molde church, hence the use of this instrument throughout the suite. The blend of the organ, soloists and orchestra is quite superb. There is a prevailing feeling of peace and tranquillity throughout most of this recording. The fourth movement is an organ solo in the great tradition of the instrument using a wide range of sounds and dynamics and giving a real sense of the dramatic.

As a whole the Suite is very moving and the use of the soprano voice on the last movement instils a feeling of resolution and leads beautifully into the trumpet passages replete with post Miles effects. The subsequent use of the voice and orchestra leads quite naturally to the guitar passages. Indeed, the moving of one section to another is really quite seamless. This is a recording that has universal appeal , whether the listeners ears are attuned to jazz or classical music.

Dick Stafford

Gerard Hoffnung CDs

Advertising on

Donate and get a free CD

New Releases

Naxos Classical


Musicweb sells the following labels
Acte Préalable
Cameo Classics
Northern Flowers
Toccata Classics

Follow us on Twitter

Subscribe to our free weekly review listing

Sample: See what you will get

Return to Index

Reviews from previous months

You can purchase CDs, tickets and musician's accessories and Save around 22% with these retailers: