Jasper van't Hof

Un Incontro Illusorio

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This is one of the more unusual CDs to come out on the Challenge label. Jasper van't Hof was heard improvising on a church organ during a radio broadcast, which resulted in this CD. Drummer Joey Baron's contributions were overdubbed during a later session. For those who grew up listening to pipe organs, such as this lovely centuries-old Italian instrument, these impromptu performances will reveal new possibilities; those used to the often dull ham-handed recordings by many Hammond organists may experience culture shock. "The Ultimate" has a meditative quality, while the chaotic nature of "No Pray" suggests someone attempting to escape demons. "Les Deux" almost has a calliope-like cadence as the organist softly sings to himself in the background. The slow development and screeching sustained notes of "Helium Speech," complete with annoying overdubbed sounds of pouring water, is probably the least successful track. Baron composed only one number, the brief introduction "One O Four." Listening to this CD requires patience and attention to the range of sounds that Jasper van't Hof produces in this very intriguing collection of improvisations.

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