Reviews that mention Ronny Graupe

March 16, 2017

Ronny Graupe

The White Belt
Pirouet Records PIT3098

Gropper/Graupe/Lillinger

Riot

WhyPlayJazz RS 030

Three-legged stools are only able to stand upright because of the weight is balanced equally in thirds. Remove one prop and the entire structure can collapse. So it is with these two CDs built around Berlin-based guitarist Ronny Graupe. Sixth session by the trio of Graupe, tenor saxophonist Philipp Gropper and drummer Christian Lillinger combined as the Hyperactive Kid in 2003, Riot is a matchless display of Extrasensory perception-like tightness. Although Danish bassist Jonas Westergaard has also been playing sporadically with Graupe over the year and Lillinger is also present, The White Belt isn’t as powerful a disc. Like a plywood support replacing a stool’s oak one, the bassist doesn’t challenge the guitarist the way the saxophonist does. Plus with the latter part of the CD solo guitar, vertical strength becomes pulpy. MORE

March 16, 2017

Gropper/Graupe/Lillinger

Riot
WhyPlayJazz RS 030

Ronny Graupe

The White Belt

Pirouet Records PIT3098

Three-legged stools are only able to stand upright because of the weight is balanced equally in thirds. Remove one prop and the entire structure can collapse. So it is with these two CDs built around Berlin-based guitarist Ronny Graupe. Sixth session by the trio of Graupe, tenor saxophonist Philipp Gropper and drummer Christian Lillinger combined as the Hyperactive Kid in 2003, Riot is a matchless display of Extrasensory perception-like tightness. Although Danish bassist Jonas Westergaard has also been playing sporadically with Graupe over the year and Lillinger is also present, The White Belt isn’t as powerful a disc. Like a plywood support replacing a stool’s oak one, the bassist doesn’t challenge the guitarist the way the saxophonist does. Plus with the latter part of the CD solo guitar, vertical strength becomes pulpy. MORE

September 1, 2016

Label Spotlight

WhyPlayJazz
By Ken Waxman

Only rarely do you hear stories about instant conversions when exposed to jazz. But it does happen. A transformation like this led to the birth of Germany’s WhyPlayJazz (WPJ) label in 2005. As Roland Schulz, who describes himself as WPJ’s chief officer In Charge of Everything, elaborates: “In 2004 my former girlfriend dragged me to my first-ever encounter with jazz in my hometown Greifswald. On stage were Carsten Daerr (piano), Christian Lillinger (drums), Johannes Fink (bass) and Philipp Gropper (tenor saxophone) - aka Sonne. Until then I thought jazz was only boring elevator music. But what I saw and heard that night on stage was something completely new. It was a kind of enlightenment. After the concert I asked Philipp if I could buy a CD with the music I just listened to. He said 'no' and I replied: ‘Then we have to make a CD’.” MORE

August 21, 2016

Field

Heal the Rich
WhyPlayJazz RS026

Defined by its accommodating title members of the Danish-German quartet here are aiming for a level playing field – in many ways – rather than an imminent overthrow of the moneyed. Yet like many European Socialist governments which effected social and economic reforms without institutional upset, Field’s relaxed, but not enervated program creates forefront timbral extension without resorting to radical or blustering practices.

Composer of all eight tracks, Berlin-based tenor saxophonist Uli Kempendorff not only arranged the performances with muted Clement Atlee-like coherence but plays throughout in an off-handed Cool Jazz-like tone. Harmonically allied with the others, his sometimes drowsy narrative is just a pose and his composing and direction can reorient the performances with the speed of an aroused Gila monster. Kempendorff has worked with the likes of pianist Ulrich Gumpert, and clarinetist Rudi Mahall, while drummer Oliver Steidle has also worked with Mahall, saxophonist Peter Brötzmann and in other collectives with Ronny Graupe, guitarist in this session. Danish bassist Jonas Westergaard plays in another trio with Graupe as well as yet other formations with drummer Christian Lillinger. MORE

June 1, 2016

Festival Report

Doek ABC
By Ken Waxman

With many parts of the Netherlands reclaimed from the sea over the centuries, the Dutch have long been adroit recycling, reusing and repurposing. So it’s no surprise that except for the soft-seated Bimhuis, with its magnificent waterfront view, most venues for this year’s Doek ABC Improvisation Festival in Amsterdam, April 29 to May 4, had initially been built as schools, warehouses and even a dungeon. These locations were particularly pertinent for this year’s fest which united local improvisers (A) with visitors from Berlin (B) and Chicago (C). The festival also demonstrated how different musicians repurpose the jazz and improvised traditions. MORE

August 21, 2015

Hyperactive Kid

10 Year Anniversary Live
WhyPlayJazz RSO 16LP

Lisbon Berlin Trio

The Line

Clean Feed CF 312 CD

Detonating guitar-centric sounds, the performances on these CDs draw as much from the indicative tropes of noise, punk and metal as the assurance of free sounds. Although both sessions share Berlin-based drummer Christian Lillinger, the cooperative Hyperactive Kid’s CD is superior to the one from the Lisbon Berlin Trio due to a better balance among disparate elements.

Organized by Portuguese guitarist Luís Lopes, who often plays advanced Jazz with Lisbon-based tenor saxophonist Rodrigo Amado as well as expressing himself on rockier terrain, the Lisbon Berlin Trio is completed by accomplished double bassist Robert Landfermann from Köln plus Lillinger. Kindred spirits for more than a decade, Hyperactive Kid matches Lillinger’s vigorous but never overbearing drum patterning with scrappy input and the compositions of two other Berliners: guitarist Ronny Graupe’s jagged strumming and slurry digressions from tenor saxophonist Philipp Gropper. MORE

August 1, 2014

Festival Report

Jazzdor-Strasbourg-Berlin 2014
By Ken Waxman

The KulturBrauerei’s music space Kesselhaus in East Berlin was a fitting site for the eighth annual Jazzdor-Strasbourg-Berlin (JSB) festival June 3-6. With jazz and improvised music’s universality now a given, a festival presenting mostly French jazz taking place in what had been one of Berlin’s oldest breweries, now repurposed from industrial to artistic use, doesn’t seem that much of a stretch.

Overall its all-inclusive musical theme was confirmed by the programming of JSB’s artistic director Philippe Ochem and his team, which already host Strasbourg’s annual Jazzdor festival. Over four nights, JSB presented musician from different parts of Germany, Belgium and the US plus proudly delineated Basque and Corsican players, all of whom worked with improvisers from France’s major musical centres. MORE

July 22, 2011

Uli Kempendorff Quartet

Louise
Jazzhaus Musik JHM 189

Mark Anderson/ Paul Dunmall/Philip Gibbs/Tony Hymas

21st Century V-Bop

SLAM CD 284

Quartet combinations with saxophone, guitar and drums often negotiate the boundaries separating Jazz-Rock and Jazz-Improv. The German and British ensembles featured here negotiate opposite sides of the divide precisely because of each combo’s fourth member. With resilient pressures from Marc Muellbauer’s double bass, the band of reedist Uli Kempendorff, drummer Kay Lübke and guitarist Ronny Graupe works in Jazz-Improv conception. Meanwhile the intricate, somewhat spacey lines from Tony Hymas’ keyboards encourage Jazz-Rock invention from saxophonist Paul Dunmall, guitarist Philip Gibbs and drummer Mark Anderson. MORE