Jan Garbarek – Bobo Stenson Quartet – Witchi-Tai-To (1974)

Jan Garbarek-Bobo Stenson Quartet - Witchi-Tai-To (1974)
Artist: Jan Garbarek – Bobo Stenson Quartet
Album: Witchi-Tai-To
Label: ECM Records
Year Of Release: 1974
Quality: FLAC (tracks)

1. A.I.R. 8:15
2. Kukka 4:32
3. Hasta Siempre 8:10
4. Witchi-Tai-To 4:24
5. Desireless 20:25


Jan Garbarek, tenor saxophone, soprano saxophone
Bobo Stenson, Piano
Palle Danielsson, Double-Bass
Jon Christensen, Drums

This 1974 session by the Garbarek-Bobo Stenson quartet is an important chapter in the rise of the ECM style, a shift toward a more spacious, deliberated music. Although the tunes are drawn from mostly American jazz sources and the influence of the John Coltrane quartet looms large, it’s also beginning to define a distinctively Scandinavian style, a combination of cool textures, open harmonies, and intense lyricism. It comes as much from the rhythm section as from Garbarek’s own linear, melodic focus, with pianist Stenson, and bassist Palle Danielsson using spare ostinatos in support and drummer Jon Christensen coloring the music with cymbals and brushes. They’re heard in a well-balanced program, with each piece revealing another facet of the group. Garbarek’s soprano is a keening presence on Carla Bley’s “A.I.R.,” while his tenor is all brooding Spanish passion on Carlos Puebla’s “Hasta Siempre,” propelled by Christensen’s march rhythms. Danielsson’s “Kukka,” the sole original, is highlighted by the bassist’s own melodic solo, while hints of the blues suffuse Stenson’s spare opening to Jim Pepper’s “Witchi-Tai-To.” The 20-minute version of Don Cherry’s “Desireless” has a majestic, unfolding lyricism that’s both distinctive and the CD’s strongest homage to the Coltrane style. –Stuart Broomer

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