Various Artists — Jazzprint Sampler 2001
(Jazzprint JPVP999CD, 2001, CD)
by Jeff Melton, Published 2002-09-01
The UK’s Voiceprint label has done well to carve a niche as a purveyor of lost archival recordings both from Canterbury artists (Soft Machine) and 80s alternative bands (the Alarm, All About Eve). To emphasize the jazzier side of their reissue campaign, Rob Ayling chose a set of representative tracks from his acclaimed releases. The first song is a live rendition of Robert Wyatt’s “P.L.A” from the Soup Songs collection of recordings. Ex-Soft Machine guitarist John Etheridge follows with a blues track from his early 90s disc, Ash. Jim Mullen and Howard Riley each get multiple tracks distinguishing their choice discographies. Mullen’s work is heavily steeped in blues while Riley has been touted as one of the fathers of the British free jazz scene since the 60s. Also spotlighted here is a telepathic duet, “Interchange,” where Riley is paired with the other vanguard of the scene, Keith Tippett. Probably the most significant piece on the disc is Mike Westbrook’s “Riding down to Platterback.” This song fits into a cabaret vocal style that masks the complex arrangement of the piece by relying heavily on accordion. Next up is Annie Whitehead’s “Alien Style” single from early 80s, which is an excellent ska-based piece too. Closing out the disc is the opening medley of pieces from the Zappatistas Live in Leeds tribute, reviewed elsewhere this issue. Overall the collection of tracks warrants further inspection by jazz enthusiasts and serves as a worthy introduction to a catalogue that is only deepening in quality.
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Keith Tippett RIP – One of the giants of British jazz has left us. Keith Graham Tippetts, known professionally as Keith Tippett, died today at the age of 72. His work from the late 60s into the 70s and beyond includes some of the greatest jazz produced in the UK, and stands as an impressive oevre to this day. » Read more
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From the press release:
To Wake a Dream in Moving Water takes from Echo Us' past and spins it into a whole new direction, one closer to traditional acoustic Celtic music than ever before.
To Wake a Dream in Moving Water was composed and recorded during the first few months of 2017. Although Celtic influenced and comprised of a number of re-workings of Irish folk tunes and Breton aires, the album is still in large part new and original Echo Us music that fits right in the Echo Us ‘canon’. “Wake” is a natural progression from “A Priori Memoriae”, which was released to critical acclaim in Europe in 2014.
To Wake a Dream in Moving Water is Echo Us’ ‘Celtic’ album that was planned for a long time but never executed because of the work on the trilogy that came before it. The album title is a typical ‘Echo Us’ play on words which one can find their own meaning.
“It is also both evocative of the Oregon rain, which I am told is not too unlike the rain in Ireland.”(Matthews)
To Wake a Dream in Moving Water is also a comment on conception- which was unintentional when the lyric was written. Matthews surprised himself a few months after writing it, realizing that the song was actually about the nitty gritty, biological workings of what happens when a child is conceived. The folk song it derives from musically describes a courting ritual, one that even today we can all relate to in our own way.
“Come With Me Over the Mountain" in acapella was the musical inspiration for the song, and came into my consciousness after the lyrics were written a few months prior. “ (Matthews)
As with all Echo Us recordings, a number of seeming coincidences resulted in connections being drawn where prior there were none. Another experience of similar capacity was found in oboe samples from A Priori Memoriae that echoed the traditional “May Morning Dew’, also reworked for guitar on the new album.