【Martin Speake - Change Of Heart】[ECM](2006) ★★★★★


(English follows Japanese)

 

My Favorite Album (379)

 

By Takaaki Kondo, Tokyo Jazz Review
https://www.facebook.com/tokyo.jazz.review

 

 

Martin Speake君は1958London出身のAltoist16歳でサックスを始め、Trinity College of Musicでクラシックのサックスを学ぶ。Lee Konitz, Charlie Parker, Warne Marsh, Bill Evans, Keith Jarrett, Ornette Coleman, Steve Coleman, Rabi Abou Khalil, Paul Motianを聴いて次第にJazzに傾倒。1997年リリースの"Amazing Grace Spotlite"CDデビュー。続いて: 

"The Tan T'ien" (1998)

"Martin Speake's Fever Pitch" (1998)

"Trust" (2002)

"Secret" (2003)   

"Exploring Standards" (2004)    

"My Ideal" (2004) 

"The Journey" (2005)     

"Charlie Parker" (2006)  

"Change of Heart" (2007) 

"Spark" (2007      )

"Hullabaloo"       (2008)

"Generations" (2008)

"My Ideal Martin Speake" (2010)

"Live at Riverhouse       " (2011)            

"Two Not One" (2012)

"Always a First" (2013)


 お~、並べてみるとほとんど毎年アルバム出してるじゃん。私は,Nikki Iles(p)のアルバムをまとめ買いした時に、"Secret" (2010)というアルバムで彼の存在を知りました(遅いですね)。で、とっても好印象を持った。まずは音色が良い。とっても良い。やっぱりClassicをみっちりとやったのでキレイです。しかし私の嫌いな「クラシック臭」は無く、さりとて「ブリブリ鳴らすぜアメリカン系」でもなく、なんとも良い塩梅。やっぱり音楽家は音色が「命」ですね。 


Improvisation
Styleはと云うと、特にコレといった特徴は無い(ゴメンね)。他のDuoのアルバムを聴くとわかるんですが、「ホレ、コッチに行くぜ、これはどうだい!」的な強引な持って行き方はしない。ハーモニーの中で心地よく、適度な範囲内で趣味よくお散歩してる。英国人だからなんでしょうかね。しかし音色にしっかりと

Martin Speake

と書いてあるので、一音で彼だとワカル。もうそれで十分。この音色に浸っているだけで幸せ。 


このアルバムは唯一のECMの作品。結構フリーっぽくなったりするんだけど、「柄が悪い」「押し付け」方面には行かない。もうね、気持ちい~です。全曲Martin君のオリジナル。少々激しいOpeningから牧歌的でゆっくりとした音楽が、メロディが進んでいくM1。メロディアスで耽美的なバラードのM2。ややテンポはアップするも4ビートにはならず、Martin君の美しい音色とBobo Stensonのやや硬質なピアノが印象的なM3。どの曲も自由度に溢れて、どこに行っても只管(ひたすら)に心地良い。まぁ、Bobo StensonMick HuttonPaul Motianですから、悪かろうはずはない。

 

話は前後しますが、何で55歳の叔父さんを「Martin君」などと呼んでいるかと申しますと、と~っても「いい人」なんです。彼。とりあえずTokyo Jazz ReviewBoard Meetingによる厳し~い審査(笑)に合格し、会員資格を得たMartin君。で、「"Secret" 聴いたけど、と~ってもよかったよ~」って言ったら、暫くして「お願いを聞いてもらえるととても嬉しんだけど」と何とも控えめなメールが。一体何のお願いかと構えていると、オズオズと「僕のCDReviewも書いてもらえたりナンかするのかな?やっぱり何か『審査基準』はあるの?」と。ナイナイ、そんなもんはナイ!(笑)「無いよ。CD送ってくれたら書くよ。でもちょっと順番待ちになってるから何か月か待ってもらうかもしれないけど。あと僕は絶対に嘘書かないから君のCDをボロクソに書くかもしれないけど大丈夫?」「モチロン。Arigatou!それは嬉しい!どこにCDを送ればいいの?」「じゃ、この住所に送ってね~ん」って話したら3日後に彼の全部のCDが届いた(笑)


で、ザーッと全部聴いて、大好きになった。彼の音楽が。特にこのアルバムは、朝ニ、昼ニ、晩ニ、聴いて聴いて止まらなくなった。あまりにも素晴らしいので。で、こういう場合、アメリカ人Musicianだと「今日送ったぞ」「届いたか?」「まだ届かないか?」ってウルセーんだけど(「ウルセー!届いたら教えるから黙って待ってろ!」って言っちゃう私)、彼はな~んにも言ってこない。ただコチラのWebsiteは毎日チェックしてる。そこが何ともイジラしい人なので「Martin君」。本当に良い人。で、今結構順番飛ばして書いてます(笑)

ECM
特有のとびっきり美しい音楽に浸りたい方。ECMのピアノトリオ好きの方。気持ちよ~くなりたい方。オススメです。心から。

因みに録音も極上。

文句なし。

4.5点に、彼の人柄の0.5点を加えて、久々のfull marks、★5つ也!

 

(Personnel)

Martin Speake: alto saxophone

Bobo Stenson: piano

Mick Hutton: bass

Paul Motian: drums



(Track Listings)
1. Healing Power of Intimacy

2. Change Of Heart

3. Barefaced Thieves

4. Venn

5. Buried Somewhere

6. In the Moment

7. Three Hours

8. In Code



 Martin Speake - Website

Offcial Website

http://www.martinspeake.com/


Facebook

https://www.facebook.com/martin.speake.9?fref=ts


 Preview

https://itunes.apple.com/jp/album/change-of-heart/id138077672


 Buy CD

http://www.amazon.co.jp/Change-Heart-Martin-Speake/dp/B000EQ44TI


 Audio
Martin Speake - Change of Heart
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z7samSha8_Y


 Review

Speake (for those who don't know him) is an eclectic alto saxophonist, equally at home with cross-cultural projects with classical Indian musicians, reinterpreting the music of Charlie Parker or sessioneering with the Style Council. This band features pianist Bobo Stenson, bassist Mick Hutton and drummer Paul Motian and had its genesis in a Cheltenham festival commission and tour back in 2000. ECM finally put them in the studio in 2002 but it's taken another four years to get this album out, during which time Motian has ceased to tour outside the US and Hutton is sadly no longer able to play due to injury. So while a reunion looks unlikely, this is a rewarding, if muted souvenir of the band's existence. Only one piece is taken at speed; the rest is typically sepulchral ECM fare, injected with various degrees of freedom and powered (if that's the word) by Motian's trademark patterings. Speake has a clear, luminous tone and a penchant for meandering, aching melodies; his pairing with Stenson works effortlessly.Hutton is assured, warm and inventive; this set is a reminder of what a great player we've lost. One for the ECM devotees, perhaps, but lasting pleasures are to be had within.

By Peter Marsh

Change of Heart, alto saxophonist Martin Speake's first recording for ECM, will no doubt garner him some well-deserved international exposure. But he's been a fixture on the British scene for two decades, with a varied discography that a larger audience will now hopefully explore. This disc presents only one facet of Speake's interests, but it's as strong an entry point as any to his recent discography, which has included the exceptional Indian-influenced The Journey (Black Box, 2004) and an innovative tribute, Charlie Parker (Jazzizit, 2005). In a 2004 AAJ interview Speake cited two key inspirations: pianist Keith Jarrett and drummer Paul Motian, in particular Motian's trio with saxophonist Joe Lovano and guitarist Bill Frisell. Motian's participation on Change of Heart, the end result of three prior British tours with Speake in the past decade, clearly holds special significance for Speake, who says "I really like Paul's tunes, simple yet incredibly beautiful. With that premise as a clear model, Speake's eight original compositions on Change of Heart seem custom-fitted for Motian's textural approach to the kit, from the rubato tone poem "The Healing Power of Intimacy to the eloquent title ballad, where Motian implies a gentle swing while steadfastly (and characteristically) avoiding the obvious. Joining Motian and Speake is pianist Bobo Stenson, no stranger to Motian, with whom he collaborated on Goodbye (ECM, 2005), and a highly interpretive player whose subtlest turn of phrase often says a great deal. His impressionistic strength is put to terrific use on "Bareface Thieves, whose shifts between hard swing and temporal flexibility suggest another of Speake's early influences, saxophonist Ornette Coleman. Stenson's ability to create a harmonic underpinning that's both suggestive and open-ended is especially notable on the nine-minute "Buried Somewhere, which evolves almost imperceptibly from a free-time duet with Motian into a full quartet piece where bassist Mick Hutton introduces a more defined pulse. Hutton is another British player deserving greater recognition, although stalwart ECM fans will know him from First House, a quartet featuring pianist/horn player Django Bates which released two albums on ECM in the late 1980s. He's the ideal person to round out Speake's quartet
not only because they have a shared history, but because he's as implicit a player as the rest of the quartet, managing to combine tasteful melodism with occasional dissonance to create an anchor that's both elastic and unshakable. Speake's playing can be as enigmatic as his writing. The lyricism and subtlety of both his written and improvised melodies sometimes unfold so gradually that one needs to take a mental step back to absorb it all. That characteristic well suits the strength in understated elegance that marks Change of Hearta fine album that, by revealing more with each successive listen, will undoubtedly stand the test of time.

By JOHN KELMAN

 

Martin Speake has had a varied and adventurous recording career and has always been very sure of himself. Change of Heart, his debut recording for ECM, was recorded way back in 2002, so the man's development and his emotive, post-Lee Konitz style of playing has undergone even more changes since that time. However, this ensemble, including drummer Paul Motian (who has also played with Konitz) is warmly and intuitively empathetic. Pianist Bobo Stenson -- who has never sounded more assertive and symbiotic as he does here -- and bassist Mick Hutton, dig deeply into these lyrical, utterly enchanting tunes. The beautifully open structures of "The Healing Power of Intimacy" and the title cut, move away from theme/solo/theme and favor a more wandering style that may not "swing" in the traditional sense, but are fully formed and move along writerly lines to create space for all the players; Motian's cymbal-and-snare-dancing style on the former is especially engaging. Stenson's playing through the beat, tacking on small clusters of notes at the end of Speake's lines is beguiling, pushing the whole thing, wide as it is, to some kind of inner space. The lush and languid balladry of "In the Moment" is anything but, it echoes out of the past, whispers in the present, and then drifts off into the future with its compelling warmth and lyricism. Hutton's slow, assertive bottom twins both Speake and Stenson across the melodic frame, and offers them ample space to complement one another harmonically. Stenson's solo is one of the most beautiful he's ever played. Change of Heart is one of those jazz records that is at once accessible, clear and limpid. However, it also is a place of secrets, shadows, and labyrinthine gestures that are only uncovered with repeated listening.

By Thom Jurek


Playing at Cheltenham a few years ago, this international quartet featuring the pensive and vaporous but tonally expressive alto sax of the UK's Martin Speake with Swedish piano star Bobo Stenson, British bassist Mick Hutton and former Bill Evans/Keith Jarrett drummer Paul Motian, sounded like an occasional encounter that deserved sustenance. ECM Records picked up on it, though this 2002 recording has been a long time in the pipeline. True to Speake's and Stenson's predilections for songlike, lyrical and unhurried playing, this is predominantly a wistful, yearning session with only an occasional diversion into a gallop, notably on the scurrying Barefaced Thieves. But Speake's tonal subtlety on long notes has an eventfulness of its own, and Motian can impart more rhythmic variety to slow music than almost any other drummer alive. The soft flow of Stenson's playing on Change of Heart over Mick Hutton's resonant, Charlie Haden-like bass, Speake's mix of alertness and receptive stillness, and Motian's masterly percussion add up to a distinctive.
The Guardian


 Bio

Citing Lee Konitz, Charlie Parker, Warne Marsh, Bill Evans, Keith Jarrett, Ornette Coleman, Steve Coleman, Rabi Abou Khalil, and Paul Motian as major influences, Martin has developed a personal musical voice that expresses a deep understanding of the history and language of Jazz withindividuality as an improviser that is intelligent, melodic, cool, complex, direct, beautiful and profound. orn in Barnet, North London in 1958, Martin was inspired to take up the saxophone at the age of 16. From 1977-81, he studied Classical Saxophone at Trinity College of Music, where he was awarded the prestigious Dame Ruth Railton prize for woodwind playing. He first came to public attention as a founder member of the award winning Saxophone QuartetItchy Fingers during the height of the UKs so called 80s Jazz Revival when a host of young musicians including Courtney Pine, Andy Sheppard, Django Bates, Iain Ballamy and the big bands of the Jazz Warriors and Loose Tubes were acclaimed as the leaders of an emerging generation of UK jazz talent.2004 saw the release of three different cds including The Exploring Standards Trio (33 Records) with bassist Mick Hutton and drummer Tom Skinner, a ballad album My Ideal (Basho Records) with American pianist Ethan Iverson (The Bad Plus), and The Journey (Black Box) with Indian musicians Dharambir Singh and Sarvar Sabri. Autumn 2004 he toured with Sam Rivers in his UK big band on a Contemporary Music Network tour. In 2005 he celebrated the music of Charlie Parker with a newly formed group and touring throughout the country promoting a cd release of the project. With Itchy Fingers, Martin toured Europe, South America, Africa, Britain and the USA, and recorded two albums. In 1988, he left the group to develop his own projects, and establish himself as a composer and improvisor. His studies at Canadas renowned Banff Centre for the Arts in 1990, under the artistic direction of Steve Coleman, and alongside peers that included keyboard players Andy Milne and Ethan Iverson, and trumpeter Ralph Alessi, proved to be pivotal and catalytic in Martins subsequent development as a creative musician. Martin is as comfortable and fluent playing personal interpretations of the music of Charlie Parker with his quartet, or with free improvising drummer Mark Sanders, in a duet with Ethan Iverson of the Bad Plus, or with Indian musicians Dharambir Singh and Sarvar Sabri. In 1999 he received the Peter Whittingham Award to help fund a tour of the UK with The Martin Speake Group. In 2000 he was commissioned to compose music for an international project featuring American drummer Paul Motian, Swedish pianist Bobo Stenson and English bassist Mick Hutton. This group toured in May of that year with funding from the Arts Council of England and toured again in Autumn 2001. Their first cd Change of Heart was released on ECM in April 2006. He started his own record label Pumpkin in 2007. The first release was a duo with free improvising drummer Mark Sanders and in 2008 Generations with Barry Green, Jeff Williams and Dave Green. Current projects being developed include a saxophone quartet with Phil Bancroft, Martin Hathaway and Tony Kofi and a trio with Canadian musicians Duncan Hopkins and Anthony Michelli. Martin is a committed, inspiring, and sought after jazz educator and currently teaches at Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance and the Royal Academy of Music in London, and on numerous international Jazz summer courses.