We are on November 4, 1977, the building of the Berlin Philharmonic, which hosted the most important German jazz festival - Berliner Jazztage.
There are six long tracks on two discs, the shortest of which is 9:31, the longest 24:36. With one exception ("I'll Never Stop Loving You"), they're all by the leader. On stage, the quintet of the American pianist Hal Galpera, well-known in Germany (he has performed many times in Germany). Looking at the team line-up from today's perspective, we're just making a big O! The wind section is Randy Brecker and Michael Brecker, Wayne Dockery on double bass, Bob Moses on drums. The most outstanding jazzmen wanted these musicians in their bands, not everyone was given it. Randy Brecker and Michael Brecker, who have been creating fusion-jazz Brecker Brothers since 1974, are the undisputed stars, bassist Wayne Dockery, for years playing in the bands of George Benson, Sonny Fortune, Eddie Henderson, Archie '
I will share with you only two reflections on this recording, which, I will add right away, made a great impression on me.
As much as I value Michael Brecker (I consider him one of the most important saxophonists in jazz history!), I have never understood why he was wasting his time on the Brecker Brothers, which quickly knew there was no fuel for a satisfactory existence. Maybe he couldn't resist his older brother's persuasive power? Maybe it was about commercial success? ...
One thing is certain, given his potential, he left behind a very modest legacy of truly outstanding recordings. He died in 2007, exhausted from leukemia (only 57 years old). If only for this reason, this release recorded in 1977 in a purely acoustic quintet is invaluable, because Michael Brecker, next to the leader, is his greatest asset. How Michael was able to reconcile his job at BB (BB will release his biggest hit "East River" hummed all over the world in less than a year) with his work in the Galper Quintet? Will remain a mystery. However, the most important thing is the effect of their cooperation, which we can commune with! Listen to the few-minute solo ending "I'll Never Stop Loving You", which could easily go to the jazz Sevre, if it existed. It's Michael Brecker at 100% service!
The second reflection concerns Hala Galpera. His penchant for melodic and harmonic unpredictability is legendary, and the condensed and precise style of his massive pianism has resulted in him being invited to bands and by Chet Baker and Phil Woods. The game here is ravishing, it is an unmissable engine, Galper knows how to place accents, when to charge and when to change the pace, full control of the musical narrative. However, what I heard in the middle of "Speak with a Single Voice" surpassed my idea of Galper's craftsmanship. I have a dozen or so albums in my album, with the first one, released on vinyl by the DDR Amiga, where the pianist plays with Terumasa Hino, Tony Williams and Cecil McBee. I am his fan, though not uncritical. But on this two-disc release, Galper surprised me several times,
The American publishing house Origin served us an absolute revelation, and so what that from 1977, if freshness and vigor is too much!