JJ 10/71: Gary Burton & Keith Jarrett

Fifty years ago Steve Voce thought this quintet outing exemplary except for one rather pointless freak-out. First published in Jazz Journal October 1971

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Gary Burton here finds himself in very energetic company indeed and his playing is certainly none the worse for that. Jarrett exudes power on all his instruments and even on the slow numbers like Moonchild there is a restless intensity that never allows the other musicians to let up. Grow Your Own is a belting piece with everyone being very inventive and making good use of Brown’s guitar.

Quiet Place is virtually a follow up to Moonchild and is quite outstanding for the duet between Burton and Jarrett on a very lovely melody. This track rather reminds me of the MJQ at its very best, and its shifting moods of gentleness and firmness are very satisfying. Both leaders improvise well, but Jarrett’s solo on the orthodox piano is es­pecially good.

Vietnam was written by bassist Swallow and is the only non-Jarrett composi­tion included. It teams Burton with Jarrett’s soprano, which is very nice until a rather pointless freak-out at the end of the track. Good solos though by Burton and Brown.

Fortune is another great track, opening with a very imaginative unaccompanied piano statement before Burton solos with the rhythm. The centre section is a torrid and intense piano outburst, in marked contrast to the delicacy of Jarrett’s playing as he returns for the long and brilliant concluding solo. The last track is a good rocker epitomised by Brown’s slashing guitar. A very good album.

Discography
Grow Your Own; Moonchild; In Your Quiet Place; Como En Vietnam (19 min) – Fortune Smiles; The Raven Speaks (17 min)
Gary Burton (vib): Keith Jarrett (pno/elec-pno/sop); Sam Brown (gtr); Steve Swallow (bs); Bill Goodwin (dm). NYC, 1971.
(Atlantic 2400 145 £2.15)