Fred Baker • Mark Charig • Elton Dean • Sophia Domancich • Paul Dunmall • Nick Evans • Liam Genockey • Mark Hewins • Phil Howard • Tony Levin • Alex Maguire • Paul Rogers • Roswell Rudd • Mark Sanders • Keith Tippett • Neville Whitehead


RUNE 143

Moorsong shows British jazz sax legend Dean entirely at home with an impressive range of jazz settings & styles. The CD begins with a swinging Hammond Organ-driven session. The 35' of that session showcases Dean with Alex Maguire (Hammond organ), Fred T. Baker (bass), and Liam Genockey (drums). Great grooves, great tunes and great solos.

The latter part of Moorsong features spacier, more atmospheric sets, with the music more based on modes & drones: The next two tracks have Dean, Baker, guitarist Mark Hewins, and drummer Mark Sanders, these are moody free improvisations with more room left for Dean to shine.

The last song is a duet between Hewins and Dean, which is dedicated to Syd Barrett! Moorsong shows Dean in top form throughout, exploring the varied topography of British jazz, with appeal to afficionados of jazz, fusion and free music alike...

Moorsong press release

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RUNE 103

Just Us is the long awaited reissue on CD of Elton's very first solo album, recorded & released in 1971, while he was still a member of Soft Machine.

In addition to the original 5 tracks on the album [which feature Marc Charig-cornet, Neville Whitehead-bass & Phil Howard-drums + guests Mike Ratledge-piano/organ & Roy Babbington-string bass on 2 tracks], we have added 25' of never heard bonus material, recorded live in 1972. The music on this release is a cross between the musical freedom that Elton's career would later take & more composed music comparable to Soft Machine's output.

"A welcome reissue of music first recorded in 1971 and 1972, shortly before Dean left the popular British jazz-rock group the Soft Machine, which he had officially joined only a short time earlier, in late 1969. On this recording, Dean plays alto sax, saxello and electric piano and is aided by a group of musicians which includes two additional Soft Machine members, Mike Ratledge on organ and electric piano and Roy Babbington on string bass. One of Dean's compositions on Just Us, "Neo-Caliban Grides," was actually recorded by the Softs, however, in spite of the obvious parallels, Dean's group is by no means a Soft Machine knock off. The absence of drummer/vocalist Robert Wyatt and bassist Hugh Hopper reduces both the rock element and the experimental electronics, while the presence of the additional musicians -- especially Marc Charig on cornet -- gives Dean's group a fuller sound and one that is much more in the jazz tradition. Charig's contributions on horn and those of an electric guitarist on several tracks, invite some obvious comparisons with the Miles Davis electric band of the Bitches Brew era. And with the extraordinary recording by the Davis group having been released only two years earlier in 1969, its influence on hip young British jazz players would have been substantial. Dean's prominent use of the electric keyboards also provides an obvious parallel with the contemporaneous Davis group." – William Tilland / AllMusic

Just Us press release

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This album, released under all of the musician's names, but instigated and led by Elton Dean, features all of Mujician as well as the legendary American trombonist - possibly the foremost trombonist in free-jazz, Roswell Rudd.

"Dunmall, Levin, Rogers and Tippett perform and record on a regular basis as the Mujician quartet, and the addition of Elton Dean on saxes and Roswell Rudd on trombone adds some weight to the quartet sound, but doesn't change the style of the music appreciably. Like Mujician, this augmented group starts with relatively open-ended collective improvisations, concentrating initially on individual instrumental textures and timbres, and then works its way gradually into melody, metrical regularity and interactions among various group members. Each of the three long pieces is a journey, and process is at least as important as product. In fact, the episodic, improvisational nature of the music is such that the CD might as well be one long 60-minute composition, because there's no clear sonic or stylistic transition between one piece and the next. Rudd is a real presence at times on trombone; he's an expansive, extroverted musician playing an instrument which accentuates such personal qualities. On occasion, Rudd's presence gives some of the blues-oriented sections a gregarious, almost Dixieland sensibility. Dean and Dunmall are both excellent on saxophones, and although there's no information on who's playing what, I suspect that Dunmall would be most often on tenor, while Dean would be playing his standard mixture of alto and saxello. The emotional range of the music on Bladek is enormous, and includes poignant solo work, both lyrical and raucous dialogues between group members, broad blues swagger, and some powerhouse collective free blowing which recapitulates the best of the late, expanded Coltrane groups." - Bill Tilland, All Music Guide

Bladik press release

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English jazz saxophone legend Elton was in the public eye for over 35 This was Cuneiform's first release by the great free-jazz saxophonist and composer Elton Dean and was also Elton's first-ever North American release under his own name. This album features a European all-star free-jazz band: Paul Dunmall-saxes, Paul Rogers-bass, Tony Levin-drums (all of the well known UK jazz collective Mujician) and French pianist Sophia Domancich. It's a powerful "Brit-jazz" disc that features some tightly arranged compositions mixed in with superlative free blowing.

"What makes the record is the great feeling of all involved being totally immersed in what's unfolding, which is essentially big, brawny, free-minded jazz..." - The Wire

Silent Knowledge press release

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For press and media: cover art and high resolution images are available below for download (click thumbnail, right-click image and select "Save As.."). Please credit the photographer (when available) and "Courtesy of Cuneiform Records". For more information, click here.

Just Us
Silent Knowledge

Moorsong press release
Just Us press release
Bladik press release
Silent Knowledge press release

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