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Jazz - Released January 31, 2014 | MPS

By 1971, when he released his second offering as a leader, guitarist Volker Kriegel was already established on Germany's jazz-rock scene as a monster player, courtesy of his membership in the Dave Pike Set. Before joining that band, Kriegel had been known as a formidable jazz talent since his teenage years with vibraphonists Fritz Hartschuh and Claudio Szenkar. Spectrum was issued by MPS, the visionary label that issued groundbreaking recordings by everyone from Oscar Peterson and Monty Alexander to George Duke and Peter Herbolzheimer. Kriegel's sidemen here include British pianist John Taylor on Rhodes, Peter Trunk on upright and electric bass and cello, Dutch percussionist Cees See, and master drummer Peter Baumeister. He wrote everything on the date. "Zoom" is a riff-tastic opener with Kriegel playing sitar as well as electric guitar, with Taylor's funky vamps, See burning on tablas and congas, and Baumeister breaking up a storm. This is jazz rock fusion at its very best. "More About D" commences with shakers, spacy Rhodes, and a pizzicato bassline. When Kriegel enters it becomes knotty, serpentine fusion, with loads of free jazz elements alternating with Eastern modes, walking and swinging post-bop, and more throughout its ten-minute duration. It features some of the guitarist's finest playing on the recording and delivers a portrait of his holistic musical vision. "Suspicious Child, Growing Up" reveals that Kriegel had heard, and apparently loved, the Allman Brothers Band. Its meld of acoustic and electric country blues, underscored by soulful, Stax-like electric piano and rumbling bass and percussion, gives a wide-angle view of its composer's lyricism. Closer "Strings Revisited" invert the solo capacities of cello and guitar as lead instruments with Trunk playing his instrument like a guitar, before he and Kriegel fluidly exchange fours and eights with some killer brushed breaks, rolls, and fills from Baumeister, as Taylor's piano impressionistically paints the frame before taking a smoking post-bop solo full of nuanced arpeggios and legato phrasing. Kriegel enjoyed a long, fruitful career with MPS and it's these records which define his legacy as a creative, restless musician who explored all types of jazz, rock, and world music on every recording he made for the label. That said, Spectrum is special for its ideas, boldness, confidence, and no-boundaries approach. As a result, it holds up generations later as a true jazz-rock classic. ~ Thom Jurek
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Jazz - Released January 25, 2019 | Moosicus

Jazz - Released April 26, 2013 | Art Of Groove

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Jazz - Released January 31, 2014 | MPS

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Jazz - Released April 8, 2016 | MPS

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Jazz - Released January 31, 2014 | MPS

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Jazz - Released June 2, 2017 | MPS

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Jazz - Released April 8, 2016 | MPS

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Jazz - Released January 31, 2014 | MPS

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Jazz - Released January 31, 2014 | MPS

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Jazz - Released January 31, 2014 | MPS

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Jazz - Released April 18, 1983 | Moosicus

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Jazz - Released September 24, 1974 | Moosicus

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Children - Released April 19, 2013 | Lübbe Audio