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Terje Rypdal - Terje Rypdal, Miroslav Vitous & Jack DeJohnette: To Be Continued CD (album) cover


Terje Rypdal

Jazz Rock/Fusion

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5 stars Make no mistake, this is definately jazz, not in the conventional sense mind you, but very much in the vein of most of the material on Manfred Eicher's ECM label. That being said, my favorite ECM record to be sure. I picked it up on vinyl for about $8 Cdn. two years ago. To ears unfamiliar with jazz I thought it nothing special, but since then my appreciation for the genre has vastly grown. (to be honest, I don't really listen to much prog anymore.) This album takes many listens, but it is IMMENSE after it hits. It is more atmospheric jazz than anything, but then again why the need to confine and categorize this music anyways; just listen to it!

The first track, Maya (listed as 10:18 on the record sleeve, even though its only 6:24?) May be the best track on the album. Starts off slowly and builds to a huge climax with Terje playing slowly (as he mostly does) but with huge sound, Miroslav on a full-out rampage on upright by the end, and DeJohnette all about the cymbals as usual in his unique fashion, tapping out some crazy rhythms, underpinning the music with a warm blanket of percussion. (10/10)

Mountain In The Clouds (4:55) is the second track and features really prominent bass that sounds oblique and jarring at first due to Vitous ever unusual sense of melody and odd note choices, but is quite catchy (to my ears anyway) on repeat listening. Its quite a bit less sedate and more uptempo than Maya. A different, much shorter version of this track can be found on Vitous' debut album Infinite Search (A real fusion classic with Herbie Hancock, McLaughlin, DeJohnette, and some horn player whose name Ive forgotten; A real burner that one) Miroslav's style may be hard to get into, but after you get it he'll blow your mind. Im a bass player, and he is my favorite bassist in jazz. period. (9.5/10)

Morning Lake (7: something) Is another slower but absolutely gorgeous track, again written by Vitous. He seems to have quite the penchant for recycling themes, as another version of this track can be found on Weather Report's debut album. (In my books, their best album; forget the Pastorius era) This track is a real treat for the bass geeks as it is full of crazy runs all over the place. They sit atop sparse, gorgeous lines from Rypdal. Vitous also contributes piano to this track. (10/10)

To Be Continued (10: something) Really takes a while to get into. Its a good example of one of the few times that Terje actually decides to shred an boy, does he ever. This one is written by DeJohnette and has a really addicting driving beat to it. Miroslav plays electric on this track (which really does not happen much) to great effect. This song is pretty out there in terms of structure, and I could see many a people not liking this at all; it takes dilligence on the part of the listener to appreciate, as most complicated music does. That being said, killer track. (9/10)

This Morning (5:24) Is my least favorite track on the album, and has some really harsh, dischordant bowing from Vitous and really angular guitar lines. Its not bad persay, but not my favorite. Not enough to mar a five star rating, though, as the other tracks are just THAT good. (6/10)

Topplue, Votter & Skjerf (3:48) means Hat, Gloves & Scarf and is in a similar vein to Morning Lake and Maya but not a repeat, and equally enjoyable. The power behind this sound is elusive; it is not blunt and obvious, its more hypnotic and thought provoking like good electronic music is. (10/10)

Uncomposed Appendix (1:52) seems at first to be a bit of a throwaway track, but is actually quite pretty, a nice quiet conclusion to the album. DeJohnette wrote this one, and actually sings on it. Its sounds far away and haunting, and has a strange charm to it, I think. (9/10)

The ECM recording studio is in Oslo, Norway. This album sounds like my mind's visage of Scandinavia, though I never have been there. This music seems to embody the strong silent beauty of nature, most especially landscapes covered with snow. All of the ECM records I own are like this. This album is an absolute masterpiece to me. If you see anything ECM, buy it. They are all this good. 5/5

Report this review (#202181)
Posted Monday, February 9, 2009 | Review Permalink
Mellotron Storm
4 stars This has the same lineup as Rypdal's previous album from 2 years earlier called "Rypdal, Vitous, DeJohnette". Much in the same style as well.

"Maya" features a lot of sparse sounds early on and then the guitar comes to the fore at 3 minutes. Some intensity 5 minutes in as well. "Mountains In The Clouds" is an excellent track with bass, drums and bowed bass standing out. The intensity comes and goes. "Morning Lake" opens with piano, bass and cymbals. That's Vitous on the piano. The guitar comes in after 2 minutes.

"To Be Continued" is my favourite. Drums to start as bass and some atmosphere join in. Some aggressive guitar from Rypdal before a minute and later before 3 1/2 minutes where Terje continues to rip it up until almost 7 minutes in. Nice. "This Morning" opens with drums and bowed bass. Flute from Rypdal 1 1/2 minutes in. This is great ! It settles 3 minutes in as the bowed bass and flute relax and drums roll. "Topplue, Votter & Skjerf" is mellow throughout and I like the guitar before 3 minutes. "Uncomposed Appendix" is just that, a short piece with vocal expressions from DeJohnette and piano from Vitous.

Like Rypdal's previous album this is well worth the 4 stars.

Report this review (#781544)
Posted Tuesday, July 3, 2012 | Review Permalink

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