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Album Review

Recorded live at the 1994 Montreux Jazz Festival in Switzerland and released by Challenge in 2000, this excellent performance unites trombonist Albert Mangelsdorff with drummer Reto Weber's Percussion Orchestra. Live At Montreux is an example of multiculturalism at its finest — you have jazz musicians from Germany (Mangelsdorff), and Switzerland (Weber), joining forces with a percussionist from Ghana (Nana Twum Nketia), and a zarb player from Iran (Keyvan Chemirani), at a Swiss jazz festival — and the label that released this CD is based in Holland. Mangelsdorff was 65 when Live At Montreux was recorded, and it's clear that the German improviser wasn't shying away from challenges in his old age. The music that Mangelsdorff, Weber and their allies provide is an intriguing, abstract blend of world music and avant-garde jazz. Mangelsdorff's trombone is the only wind instrument, and when he isn't blowing, all you hear are drums and percussion. Some will find the music too esoteric, but if you're a truly adventurous listener, the rewards are abundant. Sadly, Nana Twum Nketia died several months after Live At Montreux was recorded.


Born: 05 September 1928 in Frankfurt am Main, Germany

Genre: Jazz

Years Active: '60s, '70s, '80s, '90s, '00s

Trombonist Albert Mangelsdorff pioneered the art of jazz polyphonics, introducing to the avant-garde the symphonic tradition of playing multiple notes simultaneously. Born in Frankfurt, Germany, on September 5, 1928, Mangelsdorff grew up enthralled by jazz, devouring his older brother Emil's record collection. His uncle, a professional violinist, gave him music lessons as a teen, but the rise of the Third Reich forced him to keep his passion for jazz in check. Over time Mangelsdorff taught himself...
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Live At Montreux, Albert Mangelsdorff
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