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(FMP CD 88)
Commissioned for an Antwerp music festival, this suite presents a sonic map of the city, as conceived and performed by pianist/composer Fred Van Hove and eight fellow travelers at the 1996 FMP Workshop. Grab some comfortable shoes, because this excursion covers a lot of ground. Brassy long tones, unhinged vocalizing, stunningly beautiful unison passages, and full-bore freakouts combine to create a metropolis you'll want to spend a lot of time in.
"While Van Hove looked to locations in Antwerp for inspiration and marked them down as source material for the musicians to follow, he nonetheless dislocated the score sufficiently enough to never let them know precisely which part of the town they were in. This was achieved by another ingenious device that traces the history of modern music through the city. Solo, duo, trio, and full-group settings have been created in a freewheeling score to allow for structural elements that are full of enough space to be improvised in by the individual talents of these gifted musicians. In other words, as one listens to Van Hove's piano guiding his merry band of prankish improvisers through time and physical space, it is possible to visit the zoo in the time of late romanticism or impressionism, or have Belgian waffles at a café in the morning in the era of Coltrane. Where humor, architecture, emotions, and musical architecture intersect and borrow from one another is where you will find Van Hove and his orchestra reeling and rollicking on the high wire of musical risk. Antwerp will never be the same. " --All Music Guide
"Van Hove’s ensemble, which includes trombonists Johannes Bauer and Paul Rutherford, trumpeter Alex Dörner, vocalist Annick Nozati, saxophonists John Butcher and André Goudbeek, tubaist Benoît Viredaz and drummer Ivo Vander Borght, sails through extended quilts of continuous horns and sprints into forests of duos, trios and solos. Suite for B…City dismantles the city into discrete sound segments, but the dismantling is only theoretical, because the sound is both utterly open to all manner of blasts, blats and atonal clustering’s as well as it’s open to complete seamlessness." -- CODA
t Nonet/Fred Van Hove
Annick Nozati: voice
Axel Dörner: trumpet
Johannes Bauer: trombone
Paul Rutherford: trombone
André Goudbeek: alto saxophone, bandoneon
John Butcher: soprano & tenor saxophone
Fred Van Hove: piano, accordion
Benoît Viredaz: tuba
Ivo Vander Borght: drums, percussion
Recorded live by Holger Scheuermann and Jost Gebers on April 8th, 1996, during the Workshop Freie Musik at the Akademie der Künste in Berlin.
Mixed and mastered by Jonas Bergler.
Produced by Fred Van Hove and Jost Gebers.
Booklet design/Layout: Mie.
Photos: outside by Raymond Mallentjer, inside by Dagmar Gebers.