Eberhard Weber — Chorus (September 1985)
°♦° A prodigiously talented and highly innovative German bassist.Notable instruments: Custom 5–string electric upright bass
Born: 22 January 1940, Stuttgart, Germany
Album release: September 1985
Record Label: ECM
1. Part I 7:37
2. Part II 5:38
3. Part III, IV 7:48
4. Part V 3:26
5. Part VI 7:38
6. Part VII 8:17
° All composed by Eberhart Weber
° Eberhard Weber — bass, synthesizer
° Jan Garbarek — soprano and tenor saxophones
° Ralf–R. Hübner — drums
° Clarinet and flute parts played by Manfred Hoffbauer
° Oboe and English horn by Martin Küntstner
° Digital Recording, September 1984, Tonstudio Bauer, Ludwigsburg
° Produced by Manfred Eicher
° Martin Wieland Engineer
° Maja Weber Design
° AN ECM PRODUCTION
°♦° Chorus is the 1985 album by bassist Eberhard Weber. Released by ECM, this is the original CD pressed in West Germany.
°♦° Weber has always had an ear for heartachingly lovely melodies, and those on Chorus are no exception. And it’s a real joy to hear Garbarek take these melodies and wring just the right amount of emotion out of them. His tone here is incredibly pure — is this really the same man as on Afric Pepperbird?
°♦° The album is in seven interlinked parts, all very simple in structure but beautiful in execution. It begins with a bass solo over a drone, joined eventually by a slow–march drumbeat and a childishly simple two–note bass synth. Then the winds enter on simple but effective chords... eventually, Garbarek adds a shrieking sax figure on top, perfect! Parts II and III are based around simple repetitive and beautiful cadences and riffs. The combination of low–register sax and bass playing Part III’s riff in unison is awesome, and Garbarek’s pure–toned solos on top are a joy. Part IV is a brief return to the opening slow march.
°♦° After that, Part V sounds much more free–form, tempo–free and swirling, with lots of bowed bass. (I can’t recall what Garbarek does here; this is not a part I play much). Part VI bursts in with a relatively perky one–note bass rhythm and swirling sax, the most up–tempo (the only up–tempo part of the whole work). This resolves in a dazzling nigh–orchestral climax, and stops dead. As the echoes die, Part VII's electric–piano–synth arpeggios start, underlaid by a lovely theme on bass. This is quite reminiscent of Maurizius from Weber’s Later That Evening (Lyle Mays, Paul McCandless, Bill Frisell,) only I prefer this by far. The saxophone repeats this new theme — more beauty! — and somehow things work their way back to the climax of Part VI, before things die back down to the Part VII theme.
°♦° This is not an album to set the world on fire, but it will put it out nicely afterwards. Though Weber has done wonderful things with both live and studio multi–tracked bass, this is still my favourite of his albums. Highly recommended. © Nadia F. Romanini, Courtesy of ECM Records
° The Colours of Chloë (1973)
° Yellow Fields (1975)
° The Following Morning (1976)
° Silent Feet (1977)
° Fluid Rustle (1978)
° Little Movements (1980)
° Later That Evening (1982)
° Chorus (1984)
° Orchestra (1988)
° Pendulum (1993)
° Endless Days (2001)
° Stages of a Long Journey (2007)
° Résumé (2012)
° Encore (2015)
°♦° As of June 2007, reports have surfaced that Weber has suffered a stroke and is currently unable to perform. In a January 2010 interview with Die Welt, he spoke about his medical condition and future projects.
°♦° Weber was awarded the prestigious Albert Mangelsdorff–Preis in November, 2009. A box set of his 1970s’ works with Colours was released by ECM Records the same month.
°♦° Weber’s latest albums, Résumé (2012) and Encore (2015) comprise solos from his performances worldwide with The Jan Garbarek Group, overdubbed with keyboards/treatments by Weber, and sax by Garbarek and flügelhorn by Ack Van Rooyen.
© Eberhard Weber wird für sein Lebenswerk geehrt. Foto: Marijan Murat____