Mike Westbrook conductor, electric piano
John Surman baritone and soprano saxes, bass clarinet
The Swedish Radio Jazz Group:
Arne Domnérus alto saxophone, clarinet
Claes Rosendahl tenor saxophone, flute
Lennart Åberg tenor and soprano saxophone, flute
Erik Nilsson baritone saxophone, bass clarinet, flute
Americo Bellotto trumpet
Bertil Lövgren trumpet, flugel horn
Jan Allan trumpet, alto horn
Håkan Nyquist trumpet, flugel horn, French horn
Lars Olofsson trombone
Sven Larsson bass trombone, tuba
Rune Gustafsson guitar
Bengt Hallberg piano
Georg Riedel bass
Stefan Brolund bass guitar
Egil Johansen drums
Jan Bandel drums, vibraphone, percussion
After Abbey Road
CD available from Westbrook Records Now!
(See below for Vinyl & Download information)
The third release on My Only Desire Records is the debut performance of esteemed pianist/composer Mike Westbrook's cult 70s jazz masterpiece Citadel/Room 315, recorded live in 1974. Featured soloists throughout Love and Understanding are the iconic ECM recording artist John Surman plus a crack team of top Scandinavian jazz musicians.
The original RCA recording of Citadel/Room 315 is an hour-long suite of eleven tracks, beautifully composed and arranged by Mike Westbrook that is rightly considered to be one of the high-points of Brit-jazz from that era. Mike was commissioned by Sveriges (Swedish) Radio to write the work with Surman as lead soloist. He then travelled to Sweden to perform and conduct it for the first time, live in concert. This recording has never been released until now and presents a wildly different recording to the later LP, the rawness and freedom of the playing contrasting strongly with the more polished studio album.
Surman - playing baritone and soprano saxophone, plus bass clarinet - is in sumptuously freewheeling form throughout, soaring between wild expression and wonderfully controlled playing, perfectly complimenting Mike's compositions that gracefully move from jazz-rock, ballads, to tightly composed orchestral themes and more avant-garde moments. Backed by the 16-piece Swedish Radio Jazz Group led by saxophonist Arne Domnérus and Argentinian trumpeter Americo Bellotto, the group comprised the finest players on the Swedish scene, including trumpeters Jan Allan and Bertil Lövgren, guitarist Rune Gustafsson, pianist Bengt Hallberg and drummer Egil Johansen. Between them they had worked with everyone from George Russell and Stan Getz, to Monica Zetterlund and Jan Johansson.