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Album Review

Conceptually, sonically, this is really the first Weather Report album in all but name, confirming that Joe Zawinul was the primary creative engine behind the group from the beginning. It is also the link between WR and Miles Davis' keyboard-laden experiments on In a Silent Way; indeed, the tune "In a Silent Way" is redone in the more complex form in which Zawinul envisioned it, and Miles even contributes a brief, generous tribute to Zawinul on the liner. Two keyboardists — Zawinul and the formidable Herbie Hancock — form the underpinning of this stately, probing album, garnishing their work with the galactic sound effects of the Echoplex and ring modulator. Earl Turbinton provides the Wayne Shorter-like beams of light on the soprano sax, spelled by Wayne himself on "Double Image." The third founder of WR, Miroslav Vitous, checks in on bass, and hard-bopping trumpeter Woody Shaw proves to be perfectly adept at the jazz-rock game. Two short-lived standards of the jazz-rock era, the aforementioned "Double Image" and "Doctor Honoris Causa," are introduced here, yet it is mood pieces like "His Last Journey" and "Arrival in New York" that with the help of tape-speed manipulation, establish the lasting, murky, reflective ambience of this CD. ~ Richard S. Ginell, Rovi

Customer Reviews

Wrong review of this record...

The album review above concerns Joe Zawinul's self titled album released on Atlantic Records in 1971. Note how the review refers to tunes not even in the playlist. This Absolute Ensemble record is some kind of tribute, featuring songs Zawinul composed much later than 1970, and musicians he worked with long after as well. Please correct the review to reflect the personnel and songs on this record.


After listening to this album several dozen times, I've got to wonder: At what point does "going through a Zawinul phase" cross the line into "being obsessed with Zawinul"?

Fayleape is smart but not very nice

This is a BRILLIANT recording. But the top “customer’ reviewer gave it 1 star just because iTunes or someone from the label made an honest mistake?
No room for righteous mf’s in music, Mr./Ms Fayleape who doesn’t even know that the top album review is of Mile’s Davis’s epic album, “In A Silent Way”.


Born: July 7, 1932 in Vienna, Austria

Genre: Jazz

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

Joe Zawinul belonged in a category unto himself -- a European from the heartland of the classical music tradition (Vienna) who learned to swing as freely as any American jazzer, and whose appetite for growth and change remained insatiable. Zawinul's curiosity and openness to all kinds of sounds made him one of the driving forces behind the electronic jazz-rock revolution of the late '60s and '70s -- and later, he would be almost alone in exploring fusions between jazz-rock and ethnic music from all...
Full Bio
Absolute Zawinul, Joe Zawinul
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