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Mike & Kate Westbrooks 1986 album of Gioacchino Rossini interpretations, with Lindsay Cooper on sopranino sax, huge works that impart improv and humor into magnificent compositions.
 

Westbrook / Rossini
Westbrook-Rossini

Westbrook / Rossini: Westbrook-Rossini (Hatology)
Label: Hatology    
Released in: Switzerland    


"Keep in mind that this is not a collection of isolated episodes, but a considerable ensemble work as well, full of relaxed pastoral airs alternating with more tumultuous melees - a juxtaposition which has found favor in Westbrook's writing as far back as '60s and '70s scores like Marching Song, Metropolis, and Citadel/Room 315, and as recent as The Westbrook Blake, The Cortege, and On Duke's Birthday. Typically, his arrangements set you up in what appear to be comfortable surroundings, then suddenly alter your sense of perspective with a swift shift of mood. As a composer and arranger of the first rank, Westbrook thrives on contrast and diversity; yet even given that, Westbrook-Rossini's playful suggestions of Ellington, Anthony Braxton, and Charlie Chaplin could be considered surrealistic. Still, in the long run, it's Rossini, it's Westbrook, and the twain do meet."-Art Lange, from the back cover

"There are few who claim middle ground when it comes to the Westbrooks. They have been both celebrated and maligned for their dry humor and novel approach to albums or genres (from rock & roll, theater music, and traditional big-band dates, etc.), and have also been criticized for their overly produced and polished approach to large orchestral original compositions of "new jazz." But, from whatever camp you happen to listen to this recording of the Westbrook septet based on themes and arias from Rossini, all arguments about this work of great innovation in the world of arrangement -- and an homage not above poking fun at its inspiration -- are transcended. This is a huge work, with spiraling Italian tarantellas played by Westbrook on the tuba, gorgeous arias sung by Kate, outlandish improvisational episodes where Lindsay Cooper gets to shine on her sopranino saxophone and Peter Whyman on his alto, and wildly contrapuntal flowing swing from Andy Grappy's tuba and Westbrook's piano. Peter Fairlough's drumming, Kate's tenor horn, and Paul Nieman's trombone usher in -- along with Mike's tuba -- a New Orleans read of the William Tell Overture; there are five different "takes" on it here. Actually, even though they are purposely unordered, the William Tells are the meditation for the entire work, as Westbrook weaves complex blends of musics, periods, instruments, and modalities through his gorgeously tonal and melodic arrangements that pay homage to both Gil Evans and Duke Ellington. There is nothing extra -- no bombast or academic seriousness. Only joy, wondrous innovation, and a truly accurate ear to bring the modernism in the original works to a postmodern audience."-Thom Jurek, All Music






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Related Categories of Interest:

Hat Art

Compositional Forms
Improvised Music
European Improv, Free Jazz & Related
Free Improvisation
Octet Recordings



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Price: $16.95
In Stock


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Shipping Weight: 2.00 units

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Product Information:

UPC: 752156066125

Label: Hatology
Catalog ID: 661
Squidco Product Code: 9986

Format: CD
Condition: New
Released: 2008
Country: Switzerland
Packaging: Cardstock Gatefold Sleeve
Digital two track recording by Peter Pfister in the studios of Radio DRS Zurich on November 11, 12, 1986.

Personnel:

Lindsay Cooper-sopranino saxophone

Peter Whyman-alto saxophone

Kate Westbrook-piccolo

tenor horn, voice

Paul Nieman-trombone

Andy Grappy-tuba

Mike Westbrook-piano, tuba

Peter Fairclough-drums

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Track Listing:

1. William Tell Overture II 1:50

2. William Tell Overture III 2:43

3. The Thieving Magpie Overture 1:46

4. <> 18:24

5. William Tell Overture IV 5:25

6. The Barber Of Seville Overture 7:10

7. Thiev-Ish Magpie 8:24

8. William Tell Overture I 2:49

9. Si Cinge Il Pro'Guerriero 4:20

10. Isaura 12:26

11. Tutto Cangia 3:43

12. William Tell Overture V 3:24