Tuesday, March 29, 2016

Zbigniew Seifert - 1977 - Man Of The Light

Zbigniew Seifert
Man Of The Light

01. City Of Spring 6:37
02. Man Of The Light 9:45
03. Stillness 5:00
04. Turbulent Ployer 7:27
05. Love In The Garden 6:12
06. Coral 6:54

Bass – Cecil McBee (tracks: 1 to 4, 6)
Drums – Billy Hart (tracks: 1, 2, 4, 6)
Electric Piano, Organ – Jasper Van't Hof (tracks: 5)
Piano [Acoustic] – Joachim Kühn (tracks: 1, 2, 4, 6)
Violin – Zbigniew Seifert

An incredible jazz album of refreshing quality for its year. These people here have captured the spiritual intensity of John Coltrane with with the grace of classical exuberance, romantic creativity and electric dynaminism. The outstanding whoppers of "modality" such as "City of Spring", "Man of the Light" and "Turbulent Plover" are just beyond my expectation. I usually am a bit annoyed by the long formulaic modal workouts of the acoustic piano, but the classical undercurrents on this album really make these bits shine more than just the usual display of technical fludity, which is mandatory anyway for any solid jazz musician.

And the man on one of my favorite instruments of all time is fiddling away like shining star, radiating unbelievable creativity at the avant-garde/fusion galaxies where people like Coltrane or Jean-Luc Ponty used to travel. What really makes this effort even more interesting are some of these ideas that exhibit some melancholic spiritualism, such as the threnodial number of "Stillness" that carries some folk baggage within its spheres of lamentation. Such a great and simple bass riff there as well. Superb! "Love in the Garden" stumbles on the plains of the same arcane spiritualism that Mahavishnu Orchestra used explore. It even reminds me of an ambient scape. The similarities fortunately aren't overbearing as the amount of interpetrational weight is just staggering in Seifert's expressive strokes of virtuosity.

Truly stunning interaction, interpretation and execution of musical ideas.

This exceptional album by Polish violin virtuoso / composer Zbigniew Seifert was the first major exposure of his talents outside of his motherland. Legendary MPS producer Joachim Berendt, who had close ties to the Polish Jazz scene, was aware of Seifert's incredible talent and managed to pull off this recording session, bringing on board a superb team of players, which consisted of German pianist Joachim Kuhn and an American rhythm section: bassist Cecil McBee and drummer Billy Hart. Dutch pianist Jasper van`t Hof also participates on one track. Seifert composed all the music on this album, which is a great example of typical Eastern European Jazz, which cleverly combines elements of modern American Jazz, especially that of John Coltrane, with Folklore and Classical influences. Seifert's "obsession" with Coltrane's music and his improvisational technique are plainly evident, especially during the up-tempo numbers. The album's title track is dedicated to Coltrane's pianist McCoy Tyner. Hearing the album 37 years after it was recorded makes one realize how great music gets better with time, losing absolutely nothing of its initial grandeur. Both Seifert and Kuhn play some incredible solos here and the rhythm section supports them admirably every step of the way. Tragically, just three years after this music was recorded Seifert died, stricken by cancer, before his endless potential was realized and recognized properly. Seifert managed to record several albums in the US before his untimely death, but this album is definitely his most important and most perfect legacy.
Absolutely essential!

1 comment: