We've updated our Terms of Use. You can review the changes here.

Touch the Earth - Break the Shells


  • Streaming + Download

    (FMP CD 67)

    Many people have been sleeping on this trio's phenomenal music. The singular combination of Wadada Leo Smith's piercing trumpet, Gunter "Baby" Sommer's acrobatic percussion, and Peter Kowald's probing bass is playful and profound. This is also an amazing value - combining both the group's FMP albums onto a single release.

    PLEASE NOTE: This version contains the song "Long Time No See" not on either LP. It is missing the song "Break the Shells [thanks to Eckehart and Evan]" which is included on the "Break the Shells" LP.

    Immediate download of 9-track album in your choice of format. Download includes two additional files -- jpegs of CD booklet front and back, along with inside photos.
    ... more
    Purchasable with gift card

      $11.49 USD


Gebr. Loesch 04:14
In Light 12:12
Unlost Time 08:02


"This is music of the mind, but it is also from the body and the earth itself. This is free jazz that sings!" - All Music Guide in 4 1/2 star review

"Their catalog is of consistently excellent quality, concentrated and intense, with an independence of spirit which recalls Mingus." - Penguin Guide to Jazz

"Seduces the listener into a spacious, colorful realm of improvised music with hauntingly beautiful solos from trumpeter Smith and suspenseful textural shadings from bassist Kowald and percussionist Sommer." - Jazz Times

Peter Kowald: double bass;
Wadada Leo Smith: trumpet, flugelhorn, African thumb piano, flute;
Günter Sommer: drums, percussion, bells, organ pipes

Recorded live by Jost Gebers on November 13th and 14th, 1979 (tracks 1, 2, 3, 5, 6, 7), and on January 29th, 1981 (tracks 4, 8, 9), at the Flöz in Berlin.
Mixed by Jost Gebers.
Mastered by Jonas Bergler.
Produced by Jost Gebers

Artwork: Peter Kowald.
Layout: Peter Kowald and Jost Gebers.
Photos: Dagmar Gebers

This download edition follows the CD compilation of the LPs FMP 0730 (Touch the Earth) & FMP 0920 (If You Want the Kernels, You Have to Break the Shells), and is drawn from the LP master tapes.


released June 24, 1997


all rights reserved



Destination: OUT store Borken, Germany

The exclusive home of FMP digital releases.

contact / help

Contact Destination: OUT store

Streaming and
Download help

Redeem code

Report this album or account

Destination: OUT store recommends:

If you like Touch the Earth - Break the Shells, you may also like: