Saturday, May 22, 2010

CD of the Day - "Return to Forever: La Fiesta"

CD of the Day
Return to Forever: "La Fiesta in West Germany 1972" (Be Twisted!) 2010

Despite the fact that it's a bootleg CD issue, copied directly from a soundboard during a concert in Hamburg (mispelled Hamburgh on the back cover) 38 years ago, the sound quality is very good and the musical content is simply superb. It's really a must-have item for any RTF fan, specially if you consider that it's a rare sample of the first RTF incarnation, but without Flora Purim. In other words: a totally instrumental set.

Surprisingly, Airto doesn't performs any percussion instruments neither does any vocal effects, but plays his ass off on the drums. Joe Farrell plays only flute & soprano sax, avoiding the tenor. And Stanley Clarke focuses on the acoustic bass exclusively, while Chick concentrates on the Fender Rhodes (with a lot of sensational wah-wah and distortion effects), using the acoustic piano only once, during the improvised intro for a 30-minute-plus medley of "Sometime Ago" (the best "baião" ever composed by a non-Brazilian musician!) and "La Fiesta."

This 68-minute long concert was recorded on September 15, 1972 - seven months after the NY recordings of the "Return To Forever" debut album for ECM, and one month prior to the London sessions of their second LP, "Light As A Feather," that would be released by Polydor. It explains why Chick announces Stanley Clarke as the only composer of "Light As A Feather," since Flora Purim hadn't added the lyrics yet. The German audience also had the privilege to listen to "Captain Marvel" as the opening tune.

For the back cover, the bootleg producers used a picture of RTF with Lenny White on drums, although giving the proper credit to Airto.


これぞまさにORIGINAL RTFの貴重なライブ音源です!チック・コリアの名をこの世に知らしめたあの名盤「カモメ」リリース直後の1972年9月15日ドイツ、ハンブルグ公演をマスターテープからのソースによる高音質サウンドボード盤にて完全収録しています。とにかくこのオリジナルメンバーでの活動時期は短命だったため、数えられる程しかライブを行っておらず、このような音源が残っていることが奇跡的です。当然「カモメ」路線を再現したステージングで、ジャズに留まらず、ブラジリアン・テイスト、カリプソなどの要素も多彩に持ち込んだクロスオーバーの先駆け的なサウンドはこのメンバーならではものです。ジャズ・ファンのみならず必聴アイテムです!

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