Eberhard Weber

The Colours of Chloë

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Eberhard Weber's first record remains his most well-known and influential. An ambitious work of what might be called symphonic jazz, The Colours of Chloë helped to define the ECM sound -- picturesque, romantic, at times rhythmically involved, at others minimalistic and harmonically abstruse. Weber at various points combines strings, choir, synthesizer, and small jazz ensemble. It's a brew that can bring to mind some of the progressive rock and fusion of the era, although Weber's vision is a good deal more idiosyncratic than that. The disc is comprised of only four tracks. First is the atmospheric, stage-setting "More Colours," followed by the title track, during which pianist Rainer Brüninghaus and drummer Ralf Hübner become active. Next is "An Evening With Vincent Van Ritz," featuring deft Rhodes chording from Brüninghaus and a flügelhorn solo by Ack van Rooyen. Finally, there's the nearly 20-minute "No Motion Picture" (this was originally side two of the LP), based on a fast, repetitive bass riff that keeps re-emerging throughout the course of the composition. People will disagree about whether The Colours of Chloë stands the test of time, but Weber's aesthetic played a significant role in the creative music of the '70s, attracting a fair share of emulators.

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