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Sunday, April 4, 2010

Record of the Decade - Angel Song - Wheeler/Koonitz/Frisell/Holland on ECM

... yes, of the's my strong opinion such a disk appears every ten years or so, indeed!

Issued in 1997 on ECM, produced as always by Manfred Eicher himself and recorded in NYC, the four are playing ALL Kenny Wheelers' compositions.

What attract me more while fondly listening to this record is the sense of communion, the skill and intimate presence of musicians also during solos.

The flugelhorn is amazing in dynamics and lyricism, it's a beautiful voice - mr. Wheeler's true voice - and it is among the most easily recognizable ever, like Miles, Chet and Jon Hassel and (very) few others: a note is enough to understand who's behind the horn...

The music is pleasant, poetic, sometimes angular, modal, sometimes classic in reprising a theme, hide and seeking with length and speed, ever changing.

Sonically it's also a winner and of highest ranking: the soundstage presents, from left to right Bill Frisell, Lee Koonitz, Kenny Wheeler and Dave Holland... clap, clap, clap...;-)

As I told you, when someone is not playing, the noises of tipically standing, still musician are well "here", breathing, snorting, clicking instruments keys, the guitar amp humming... another feature I simply love is the nature of mr. Wheeler breathing through his instrument... you can "see" through hearing how the mouth is opened before a phrase, the air column sounds always different, as every breath to fill his chest is different... an AMAZING sense of trueness!

This disc really doesn't deserve this vivisection, as music is soo deep and beautiful, timeless... it's a record I own and enjoy like the first day since 1997 and I hinted it to countless friends who hinted themselves, etc. etc.

Maybe a well kept secret, also if the chain me and - I guess - several others appreciating this very disk began, someway broadened its diffusion;-)))

Who wouldn't know it... please buy it, period!

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