Monks Casino

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aec.itk100.2 11/20/07 New
$41.99

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Review

Review Text The jazz world owes a deep debt of gratitude to pianist Alexander von Schlippenbach, who undertook in 2003 and 2004 a project that was long overdue: a recording of everything written by the eccentric genius Thelonious Monk. In retrospect, it seems crazy that no one else had done this before: Monk's oeuvre isn't very extensive -- the core repertoire of his compositions would fit easily on a single disc -- and yet there are a dozen or so pieces that are rarely played and a handful that had never been recorded before this. The three discs in this box set are, therefore, a very nice mixture of the familiar ("Ruby, My Dear," "In Walked Bud," "'Round About Midnight," "Epistrophy") and the less familiar ("Brake's Sake," "Green Chimneys") with a smattering of delightful, if sometimes rather slight, complete obscurities ("Oska T," "Raise Four," "Consecutive Seconds"). In creating this musical monument, Schlippenbach had two basic approaches to choose from: he could either play the tunes in a relatively straightforward style, offering both an enjoyable tour of the Monk book and a handy reference tool for other players, or he could interpret the music more freely, using this kaleidoscopic assortment of quirky melodies as a framework on which to build his own personal jazz statement. For better or for worse, he took the latter approach, arranging the tunes for an unusual ensemble (trumpet and bass clarinet with piano trio) and in sometimes startlingly abstruse ways, combining multiple tunes into medleys and sometimes bopping back and forth between different compositions within a single track. The result is sometimes brilliant and occasionally questionable, but there's never any doubt about Schlippenbach's understanding of and affection for the material. The irreverence with which he approaches Monk's music is something that Monk himself would surely have appreciated -- and yet there's a constant and deep undercurrent of loving admiration running beneath every bar he plays. This set would not make a very good introduction to Monk's music; newcomers are more likely to find it baffling than enlightening. But those already familiar with the music will hear Schlippenbach's interpretations as a breath of fresh, if sometimes astringent, air. Highly recommended. ~ Rick Anderson

Track Listing

CD: 1

  1. 1. Thelonious
  2. 2. Locomotive
  3. 3. Trinkle-Tinkle
  4. 4. Stuffy Turkey
  5. 5. Coming on the Hudson
  6. 6. Bemsha Swing
  7. 7. 52nd Street Theme
  8. 8. Pannonica
  9. 9. Evidence
  10. 10. Misterioso
  11. 11. Sixteen
  12. 12. Skippy
  13. 13. Monk's Point
  14. 14. Green Chimneys
  15. 15. Little Rootie Tootie
  16. 16. San Francisco Holiday
  17. 17. Off Minor
  18. 18. Gallop's Gallop
  19. 19. Crepuscule With Nellie
  20. 20. Hackensack
  21. 21. Consecutive Seconds

CD: 2

  1. 22. Brilliant Corners
  2. 23. Eronel
  3. 24. Monk's Dream
  4. 25. Shuffle Boil
  5. 26. Hornin' In
  6. 27. Criss Cross
  7. 28. Introspection
  8. 29. Ruby, My Dear
  9. 30. In Walked Bud
  10. 31. Let's Cool One
  11. 32. Let's Call This
  12. 33. Jackie-Ing
  13. 34. Humph
  14. 35. Functional
  15. 36. Work
  16. 37. I Mean You
  17. 38. Monk's Mood
  18. 39. Four in One
  19. 40. Round Midnight
  20. 41. Played Twice
  21. 42. Friday the 13th
  22. 43. Ugly Beauty
  23. 44. Medley

CD: 3

  1. 45. Bolivar Blues
  2. 46. Well You Needn't
  3. 47. Brake's Sake
  4. 48. Nutty
  5. 49. Who Knows
  6. 50. Boo Boo's Birthday
  7. 51. Ask Me Now
  8. 52. Think of One
  9. 53. Raise Four
  10. 54. Japanese Folk Song
  11. 55. Blue Monk
  12. 56. Bright Mississippi
  13. 57. Reflections
  14. 58. Five Spot Blues
  15. 59. Children's Song
  16. 60. Blue Hawk
  17. 61. We See
  18. 62. Blue Sphere
  19. 63. Light Blue
  20. 64. Teo
  21. 65. North of the Sunset
  22. 66. Rhythm-a-Ning
  23. 67. Straight No Chaser
  24. 68. Epistrophy

Product Details

Release Date
11/20/07 

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