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Eberhard Weber|Once Upon A Time (Live in Avignon)

Once Upon A Time (Live in Avignon)

Eberhard Weber

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Since his debilitating stroke in 2007, the only new music released by ECM legend Eberhard Weber has consisted of live recordings. However, those releases—2012's Résumé and 2015's Encore —were highly unusual live recordings. Rather than simple documents of a night in a concert hall featuring the German bassist performing solo or with a band, those two albums saw Weber taking solos he had performed in concert and reconfiguring and recontextualizing them into brand-new works. It was a phenomenally creative way for him to continue making new music, and one that redefined the idea of what a "live" album could be. The arrival of Once Upon A Time—a straightforward recording of a solo recital at Avignon's Théâtre des Halles in August 1994—could be seen as something of a disappointment in comparison. However, whatever creative adventurousness may be missing in terms of post-performance processing is more than made up for by the extraordinary performance that Weber delivered that evening. Far from the quintet and orchestra performance that made up his only other "proper" live album (2005's Stages of a Long Journey), Once Upon A Time finds Weber on stage alone with just his electric double bass and a loop pedal and while one may presume this would lead to a delicate and pensive performance, the show is absolutely bristling with energy. Weber is still in full possession of the atmospheric approach that made his studio albums some of the definitive "ECM sound" records of the '70s and '80s, but his pure dexterity as a bassist is also on glorious display. The performance is cosmic in breadth, with loops used intelligently and near-invisibly (it often sounds as if multiple Webers are on stage), but when Once Upon A Time gets a little funky, or Weber unleashes a barrage of rapid, fidgety fingerpicking on "Ready Out There," it's clear that the performance wasn't designed to be a somnolent affair. And while the audience is occasionally reserved and polite, when they do get on Weber's wavelength (most notably during a positively liquescent run through "My Favorite Things"), the entire affair becomes transportive. An exceptional release from a singular talent. © Jason Ferguson/Qobuz

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Once Upon A Time (Live in Avignon)

Eberhard Weber

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1
Trio For Bassoon And Bass (Live in Avignon)
00:06:12

Gerard De Haro, Mixer, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Eberhard Weber, Composer, Bass, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer - Manfred Eicher, Producer, Executive Producer - Nicolas Baillard, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel

℗ 2021 ECM Records GmbH

2
Pendulum (Live in Avignon)
00:12:23

Gerard De Haro, Mixer, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Eberhard Weber, Composer, Bass, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer - Manfred Eicher, Producer, Executive Producer - Nicolas Baillard, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel

℗ 2021 ECM Records GmbH

3
Ready Out There (Live in Avignon)
00:05:09

Gerard De Haro, Mixer, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Eberhard Weber, Composer, Bass, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer - Manfred Eicher, Producer, Executive Producer - Nicolas Baillard, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel

℗ 2021 ECM Records GmbH

4
Silent For A While (Live in Avignon)
00:06:04

Gerard De Haro, Mixer, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Eberhard Weber, Composer, Bass, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer - Manfred Eicher, Producer, Executive Producer - Nicolas Baillard, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel

℗ 2021 ECM Records GmbH

5
Delirium (Live in Avignon)
00:07:09

Gerard De Haro, Mixer, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Eberhard Weber, Composer, Bass, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer - Manfred Eicher, Producer, Executive Producer - Nicolas Baillard, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel

℗ 2021 ECM Records GmbH

6
My Favorite Things (Live in Avignon)
00:05:12

Richard Rodgers, Composer - Oscar Hammerstein II , Author - Gerard De Haro, Mixer, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Eberhard Weber, Bass, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer - Manfred Eicher, Producer, Executive Producer - Nicolas Baillard, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel

℗ 2021 ECM Records GmbH

7
Air (Live in Avignon)
00:03:22

Gerard De Haro, Mixer, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Eberhard Weber, Composer, Bass, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer - Manfred Eicher, Producer, Executive Producer - Nicolas Baillard, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel

℗ 2021 ECM Records GmbH

Album Description

Since his debilitating stroke in 2007, the only new music released by ECM legend Eberhard Weber has consisted of live recordings. However, those releases—2012's Résumé and 2015's Encore —were highly unusual live recordings. Rather than simple documents of a night in a concert hall featuring the German bassist performing solo or with a band, those two albums saw Weber taking solos he had performed in concert and reconfiguring and recontextualizing them into brand-new works. It was a phenomenally creative way for him to continue making new music, and one that redefined the idea of what a "live" album could be. The arrival of Once Upon A Time—a straightforward recording of a solo recital at Avignon's Théâtre des Halles in August 1994—could be seen as something of a disappointment in comparison. However, whatever creative adventurousness may be missing in terms of post-performance processing is more than made up for by the extraordinary performance that Weber delivered that evening. Far from the quintet and orchestra performance that made up his only other "proper" live album (2005's Stages of a Long Journey), Once Upon A Time finds Weber on stage alone with just his electric double bass and a loop pedal and while one may presume this would lead to a delicate and pensive performance, the show is absolutely bristling with energy. Weber is still in full possession of the atmospheric approach that made his studio albums some of the definitive "ECM sound" records of the '70s and '80s, but his pure dexterity as a bassist is also on glorious display. The performance is cosmic in breadth, with loops used intelligently and near-invisibly (it often sounds as if multiple Webers are on stage), but when Once Upon A Time gets a little funky, or Weber unleashes a barrage of rapid, fidgety fingerpicking on "Ready Out There," it's clear that the performance wasn't designed to be a somnolent affair. And while the audience is occasionally reserved and polite, when they do get on Weber's wavelength (most notably during a positively liquescent run through "My Favorite Things"), the entire affair becomes transportive. An exceptional release from a singular talent. © Jason Ferguson/Qobuz

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