Reviews that mention Maarten Altena

February 14, 2005

SVEN-ÅKE JOHANSSON

Mit dem NMUI in SO 36 ‘79
GROB 650/OBCD 10

More than an artifact, but less than a discographical revelation, this CD restores to circulation one of the Berlin-based label FMP’s few 45-rpm singles. Released in the mid-1980s, that platter contained a 12-minute selection from this concert. Restored to its nearly 78½-minute length, the full-length CD offers a peek at eight, first generation Euroimprovisers during their transition from Free Jazzers to Free Musicians.

While there are many moments of unbridled excitement and tongue-in-cheek humor here, the rational for releasing the truncated single is obvious as well. Sounding most of the time like participants in a high-class House Rent party, there are points at which it seems that the musicians really do play whatever comes into their heads. Lacking focus and clarity, you have to hear the disc as a particularized soundscape of its time -- 1979 -- and place -- Berlin. MORE