Pierre Dørge's New Jungle Orchestra

Live in Chicago

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Using a substantially pared down version of his standard New Jungle Orchestra and enlisting the services of two Chicago locals for his rhythm section, Danish guitarist Pierre Dorge still manages to give the listener a reasonable, if thinned out, picture of what this band was capable of. Dorge's music tends to be an amalgam of African-tinged jazz and early Ellingtonia, making up in energy what it sometimes lacks in cohesion. There are several attractive themes presented here and some fine soloing, notably by John Tchicai and Dorge himself, whose clear, ringing tone is instantly recognizable. Bassist Harrison Bankhead, known for his work with 8 Bold Souls, and the wonderful drummer Hamid Drake provide fine support, but the ensemble as a whole sounds overly hesitant and lethargic. While this concert has its moments, the group as a whole is far better represented on albums like Even the Moon Is Dancing and Johnny Lives.

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