Invisible Threads John Surman

Cover Invisible Threads

Album info

Album-Release:
2018

HRA-Release:
19.01.2018

Label: ECM Records

Genre: Jazz

Subgenre: Contemporary Jazz

Album including Album cover Booklet (PDF)

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  • 1At First Sight02:34
  • 2Autumn Nocturne06:52
  • 3Within The Clouds04:48
  • 4Byndweed05:11
  • 5On Still Waters04:46
  • 6Another Reflection01:33
  • 7The Admiral05:16
  • 8Pitanga Pitomba07:06
  • 9Summer Song05:23
  • 10Concentric Circles06:33
  • 11Stoke Damerel03:38
  • 12Invisible Threads05:40
  • Total Runtime59:20

Info for Invisible Threads



Saxophonist and clarinettist John Surman is often characterized as a quintessentially English improviser and composer, and hints of folk music and a pastoral ambience are attributes of his music on well-loved albums like 'The Road to Saint Ives' or his last ECM recording, 'Saltash Bells'. Yet Surman also has a long history of working with musicians from other countries and cultures, players united by such invisible threads as a shared feeling for melody that transcends the idioms. John Surman met pianist Nelson Ayres – known to aficionados of Brazilian jazz for his work with Airto Moreira, Milton Nascimento and Banda Pau Brasil – while on tour in South America. In Oslo, Surman came to know and appreciate the playing of Rob Waring, expatriate US vibraphonist (recently heard on ECM with Mats Eilertsen). The three musicians come together to play a new programme of Surman originals – plus Nelson Ayres's "Summer Song" – in a session recorded at Oslo's Rainbow studio in July 2017, produced by Manfred Eicher.

John Surman, soprano and baritone saxophones, bass clarinet
Nelson Ayres, piano
Rob Waring, vibraphone, marimba

Eighteen years have flashed past since the recording of “A Biography of the Rev. Absalom Dawe” but the work created in the solo albums has continued to make itself felt in the interim. Not only have there been solo concerts each year, but pieces created for solo format have found their way into the repertoire of John’s work with the Trans4mation string quartet. The entire “Road to Saint Ives” album, meanwhile, was transcribed and arranged for orchestra by Howard Moody and has since been played by the BBC Symphony Orchestra, the Bournemouth Sinfonietta and other ensembles. The electronic pulse patterns and textures of the Surman solo idiom have also became part of the fabric of the duo music with Jack DeJohnette as on the album “Invisible Nature” (released 2002).

Yet “Saltash Bells” also re-emphasizes the uniqueness of the solo work. Nowhere else do Surman’s reeds stretch out quite as sensuously, with melodies that continue to unfold all the way to the horizon, the title track implying the clear days when you can see, and hear, forever. In the multi-tracked and delay-system pieces Surman finds an accord with the ‘other players’ which no real-time acoustic group music could duplicate. There is beautiful playing on each of his saxophones and clarinets and – listen closely to the backgrounds of “Sailing Westwards” – some effective harmonica, too – a recorded debut for an instrument Surman has toyed with since his teens.

Booklet for Invisible Threads

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