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//catalogue  //HV-West
artist: HV-West
album: Zunder
reference: UTR 4117
release date: 01.08.1999
running time: 70:13
line-up: Carles Peris âEUR" saxophones, flutes
Bruno Steffen âEUR" piano
Herbert Kramis âEUR" bass
Mark Huber âEUR" drums
credits: Recorded November '97 by Pancho Vega & March '98 by Heiner Merk at Aula Seminar Kreuzlingen
Mixed & mastered: Rolf Stauffacher, Staff Records, Frauenfeld & Ingo Dittus, Sound Circus, Lindau
liner notes: Contemporary Improvisation from H-Western Union
HV-West brings together four smooth operators who delight in switching registers, although their main references are in jazz. The choice of a stage name by these Swiss German musicians ("HauptVerteiler West" means main electric distribution panel for the western city disticts) aptly reflects the combination of tension and convergence which their music expresses, resolving the contrast between improvisation and composition along ACDC lines. On this, their first CD, eight improvised pieces run concurrently with eight compositions. The first are evocative, sometimes even dreamlike, the second more vibrant and rhythmic, multifarious. Zunder alternates between pan shots that disclose the creative process and close-ups of structured images and blueprints of collective forms of improvisation. Always on the razorâEURTMs edge, the musicians seem to go in for risky situations and unforeseen developments, which makes them a welcome addition to the Zurich scene on which they made their appearance in 1999 only. The structured pieces were written by pianist Bruno Steffen and saxophonist and flute player Carles Peris, of Catalonian origin. Drummer Mark Huber and bass player Herbert Kramis second them with aplomb. On stage this quartet gives an electrifying performance, truly powered by the music they make. Being an avatar of "free" jazz is no concern of theirs âEUR" they much prefer composing with âEUR" and for âEUR" the here and now. "Zunder" literally means tinder; its figurative colloquial meaning is a thrashing or a rumble.
© 1999 Christian Steulet
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