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Album Review

Recorded relatively early in Leimgruber's career, this album features the saxophonist with a solid rhythm section in an expansive though largely "inside" performance of four original pieces (three by the saxophonist and one by pianist Don Friedman). Friedman is not particularly associated with the sort of free blowing for which Leimgruber came to be known, but here his romantic style that gently pushes the edges fits well. While this outing is hardly revolutionary, and the mood is more often than not subdued, it does produce some moments of intense interaction and creative interplay. As is his trademark, Leimgruber performs with technical proficiency on soprano, bass, and tenor saxophones, varying velocity and timbres. His fluid solos encompass advanced technique, but he subordinates it to the essence of the tunes, digging in hard, and loosening the harmonies. Bassist Bobby Burri and drummer Joël Allouche are competent in support, but it is Leimgruber and Friedman who split the lion's share of solo space. This one does have its moments, but there are better examples of Leimgruber available.

Biography

Genre: Jazz

Years Active: '80s, '90s, '00s

Swiss-born saxophonist (he plays virtually all of them) Urs Leimgruber has long been a fixture on the European new music, jazz, and free improvisation scenes. Leimgruber has formal training in both classical music and jazz, and began his tenure as a member of the electric, free improv jazz group Om in the 1970s with drummer Fredy Studer, Christy Doran, and Bobby Burri; he later moved to New York with Burri to form and record with their Refelexionen Quartet which, ironically enough, recorded their...
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Reflexionen Live, Urs Leimgruber
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