The Squid's Ear Magazine

Graewe, Georg Quintet: Pink Pong (Corbett vs. Dempsey)

A year and a half after their live debut on FMP, the German free/hard-bop quintet led by pianist Georg Graewe with Horst Grabosch on trumpet, Harald Dau on saxophones, Hans Schneider on bass and Achim Kramer on drums, recorded this studio album of extraordinary free improv presenting brilliantly intricate and exciting compositions, here in its first fully remastered reissue.

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product information:

Limited edition of 500 copies.

Label: Corbett vs. Dempsey
Catalog ID: CvsDCD093
Squidco Product Code: 32238

Format: CD
Condition: New
Released: 2022
Country: USA
Packaging: Cardboard Gatefold
Recorded at FMP Studio, in Berlin, Germany, on October 3rd, 4th, 5th and 6th, 1977, by Jost Gebers. Originally released as a vinyl LP in 1978 on the German FMP label with catalog code FMP 0480.


Horst Grabosch-trumpet

Harald Dau-soprano saxophone, tenor saxophone

Georg Graewe-piano

Hans Schneider-bass

Achim Kramer-drums

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Sample The Album:

Descriptions, Reviews, &c.

"German pianist Georg Gräwe, one of the most impeccable and imaginative improvisers in contemporary free music, made his debut recording, New Movements, in 1976, under the auspices of Free Music Production, the legendary Berlin-based organization run by Jost Gebers. At FMP's Jazz Now festival, in April of that year, Gräwe presented his working band, a classic hard-bop configuration with trumpet, saxophone and rhythm section. Indeed, some vestiges of that hard-bop feel permeate the music, however it's been fractured and expanded in its ambitions to include post-bop, freebop, free jazz, and free improvisation, all with an overall set of structures that betray Gräwe's deep interest in contemporary classical forms. It is an audacious debut, one of the most thrilling jazz-related European outings to emerge from the FMP program. Tenor and soprano saxophonist Harald Dau is spectacular, reminiscent in places of the great Gerd Dudek's work with Manfred Schoof Sextett - tough as nails, free within a blues-oriented context, totally inventive. He's matched by lithe trumpeter Horst Grabosch, and Gräwe's rhythm team is impeccable, with Hans Schneider's bass and Achim Kramer's drums. The LP kicks off with a 22-minute-long rollercoaster ride written by Gräwe, and continues with two more long tracks by Dau, all of them featuring thrilling interplay and brilliant tunes.

The same band hit the studio a year and a half later, again for FMP, recording Pink Pong. Even more adventurous and tightly wired, this version of Gräwe's fivesome plays more concise compositions, a total of eleven of them, spread out almost evenly amongst band members. The resulting LP is one of FMP's absolute classics, simultaneously a nod at precursors like Alexander von Schlippenbach's early groups and Manfred Schoof's killer mid-sized ensembles, but also indicating a new path for a younger set of players. Steeped in a love of folks like Lennie Tristano and Steve Lacy, the band's points of reference were diverse enough to make them stand out against some of the more exclusively hard-blowing Germans of the era.

Neither New Movements nor Pink Pong has been reissued since they were first available in the mid-1970s. Licensing directly from FMP, with newly remastered music direct from the original tapes, CvsD is proud to put these two important pieces of free music history back into circulation, throwing light on the early years of Georg Gräwe's music and expanding the picture of what FMP's vanguard mission meant.

Limited edition of 500 copies.

Artist Biographies

"Horst Grabosch (born June 17, 1956 in Wanne-Eickel) is a former German musician specializing in jazz and new music. After being unable to work as a musician, he worked as an information technologist and published artistic works on the Internet.

Live and act

Grabosch received trumpet lessons from the age of nine. After graduating from high school in 1974, he studied German, musicology and philosophy at the Ruhr University in Bochum and the University of Cologne. He then completed a degree in classical trumpet at the Folkwang University in Essen until 1984.

In the 1980s he founded and led the 'Big Band Ruhr' for 2 years. Later he made guest appearances in the Cologne 'Jazzhaus Big Band' and in the studio with Paul Kuhn's orchestra. The musical center of his work was initially in the Ruhr area with the groups around Georg Gräwe and Theo Jörgensmann. Later he worked with the Cologne groups of Dirk Raulf, Georg Ruby and Thomas Witzmann. He played at many jazz festivals in Europe, including in 1986 at Clusone Jazz with Roberto Ottaviano, Mark Dresser and Tiziano Tononi, and in 1990, 1991 and 1992 at the Berlin Jazz Festival with the ensembles of Norbert Stein, Klaus König and Michael Riessler. Tours have taken him to North and South America.

Already during his studies he performed works of new music. With Melvyn Poore and Radu Malfatti, who like him were members of the GrubenKlangOrchester in the late 1980s, Grabosch developed a trio program that mainly used experimental playing techniques and that sounds more like new music than jazz. A more intense encounter with new music began in the 1990s. Guest performances followed with the Ensemble Modern in Frankfurt and Musique Vivante in Paris with Vinko Globokar's work "Laboratorium". He finally received an invitation to join the founding ensemble of musikFabrik NRW.

Grabosch also worked as a trumpeter, orchestra manager, composer and musical director at the theater (Schauspielhaus Bochum, Schauspiel Köln, United City Theaters Krefeld and Mönchengladbach, Théâtre national de Rennes, Théâtre national de Chaillot). He was in demand as a studio musician and played on the hit musicals Starlight Express and Les Misérables. His teaching activities included a teaching position at the University of Duisburg. His career as a trumpeter ended in 1997 due to disability.

After moving to the Bavarian Oberland with his family, he trained as a multimedia information technologist at Siemens-Nixdorf in Munich and developed IT solutions and multimedia applications for industry as a business consultant until 2008. He currently works as a freelance designer for web and database applications. Grabosch is again artistically active as a lyricist and since 2017 also as a musician."

-Wikipedia (Translated by Google) (

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Harald Dau is a German saxophonist, known for his work with the Georg Gräwe Quintett, GrubenKlangOrchester and The Berlin Jazz Workshop Orchestra.

-Discogs (

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"Georg Graewe began composing and performing professionally at the age of 15. He has since been leading a variety of ensembles - ranging from trio to chamber orchestra formats - which have involved some of the leading instrumentalists in contemporary music. His compositions, which include chamber music and works for full orchestra as well as scores for films, theater productions, radio drama, and video, have been performed and broadcast around the world.

Graewe has had a long-standing trio with Dutch cellist Ernst Reijseger and US-based percussionist Gerry Hemingway since 1989. He has also performed and/or recorded with Anthony Braxton, Evan Parker, Dave Douglas, Phil Minton, Roscoe Mitchell, Barry Guy, Barre Phillips, Hamid Drake, John Butcher, Robert Dick, John Butcher, Mark Dresser among others.

Over the last 10 years, he has also written three operas. Kopenhagen (based on the same-titled play by Michael Frayn) was produced by OPER KÖLN (Cologne Opera House) in 2003. His second opera, Quicksilver, (a commission by Semperoper Dresden) came out in November 2006. And his most recent opera, Barbara Strozzi oder die Avantgarde der Liebe, was staged by Theater Luzern in Switzerland in 2010 and Oper Bonn in Germany in 2011.

Since 1999, Graewe has been closely associated with CNMAT (Center for New Music and Audio Technology) at UC Berkeley. From 2002 - 2007, he taught at Hochschule für Musik Hanns Eisler in Berlin.

In 2010, Graewe curated a series of 27 events that presented different aspects of resonance between music, poetry, visual arts, and science as part of the European Cultural Capital RUHR 2010. A catalogue plus DVD edition documenting this project has been published on his own Random Acoustics label."

-Nuscope Records (

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"Hans Schneider started playing in 1964 in a variety of beat, rock and jazz groups, joining the Georg Graewe Quintet in 1974. This has been a long standing working relationship which has included work with the GrubenKlangOrchester, though with a break from around 1983 and resurrected in 1990 to produce, among other things, the excellent recorded work of Spellings by Frisque Concordance.

Another long working relationship was formed with Wolfgang Fuchs in 1978 via a trio with Klaus Huber on drums, through Xpact with Erhard Hirt on guitar and Paul Lytton on percussion and the foundation, with Fuchs, Hirt and others, of the King Ubu Orchestru.

Hans Schneider was organiser of the first 'Internationale tage fur improvisierte musik' in Leverkusen in 1982 and was organiser and art director for the 1990 'Tage der improvisierten musik' [Days of improvised music] in Leverkusen. His list of collaborators includes Floros Floridis, Maggie Nichols, Peter Kowald, John Tchicai, Alex von Schlippenbach, Phil Minton, Sven-Ake Johansson, Kenny Wheeler, Peter Broetzmann, John Russell, David Moss, Gerry Hemingway, Alan Tomlinson, Klaus Koch, Phil Wachsmann, Gunter Christmann, Robert Dick, Evan Parker, Sebi Tramontana, Carlos Zingaro, and Fred van Hove.

Current working ensembles include the Hans Schneider-Dorothea Schurch Duett - music for double bass and voice; Xpact [new version] with Dorothea Schurch and Paul Lytton, a trio/quartet with Paul Rutherford, Paul Lovens /and John Russell, and the 'Gratkowski Chamber Trio' with English tuba player Melvyn Poore and Frank Gratkowski."

-EFI (

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"Achim Krämer (born December 2, 1955 in Wanne-Eickel) is a German drummer and percussionist.

The drummer Achim Krämer was an early musical talent. At the age of fifteen he went on tour with the pop singers Juliane Werding and Jürgen Marcus. Krämer comes from the "Jazz Wanne Scene" in the town of Wanne-Eickel. In the 1960s and 1970s there was a lively, young music scene in Wanne-Eickel that was interested in both rock and jazz music. Some of the musicians in this scene played in the big band of the Eickeler Gymnasium, led by the music teacher Bernd Sowa. Kramer was one of them. His teammates included the guitarist Norbert Müller, the pianist Georg Graewe, the saxophonist and drummer Harald Dau and the trumpeter Horst Grabosch. The "Georg Graewe Quintett" was born out of this environment and released two LPs on FMP Records. At the beginning of the 1980s he played in the Theo Jörgensmann Quartet and in Gräwe's "Grubenklangorchester", which was put together again from old and new members as "Grubenklang reloaded" as part of RUHR.2010 - European Capital of Culture.

At the end of the 1980s he had a trio with Dieter Manderscheid and Reiner Winterschladen. In the early 1990s, Krämer was a member of the "Theo Jörgensmann Werkschau Ensemble" and the Albrecht Maurer Quartet. He also played with Misha Mengelberg, Joe Sachse, Phil Wachsmann, Peter Kowald, Kent Carter, Jaki Liebezeit, Robert Dick, Michael Heupel, Phil Minton and Fred Frith, among others. He currently has a trio with Hans Schneider and Stefan KeuneHe also belongs to the Hayden Chisholm Trio and plays with Eckard Koltermann in his quartet, as well as in the Borderhopping Quintet, which also includes the Dutch saxophonist Paul van Kemenade. Since it was founded in 1999, he has been a member of the "Adam Noidlt Missiles" ; a project by the drummer Frank Köllges. He also played in " Annemarie Roelofs Waste Watchers" and in the "Berlin Jazz Workshop Orchestra".

Krämer also works as a theater musician."

-Wikipedia (

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Track Listing:

1. New Time 1:46

2. Hordel 3:59

3. Low Noise 5:31

4. Braunsscheich 0:31

5. More Noise 4:17

6. Fusion 3:05

7. Approximated 4:09

8. Pink Pong 4:21

9. Gerlinde-Gesagt 6:17

10. Holloposz 5:04

11. Moongun 0:57

Related Categories of Interest:

Improvised Music
Free Improvisation
European Improvisation, Composition and Experimental Forms
Quintet Recordings
Jazz Reissues
Staff Picks & Recommended Items
New in Improvised Music
Recent Releases and Best Sellers

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Corbett vs. Dempsey.

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