Joscha Oetz

Vieles Ist Eins

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Vieles Ist Eins presents bassist Joscha Oetz soloing and duetting with percussionist Greg Stuart, saxophonist Andreas Wagner, and bassist Barre Phillips. The improvisations come from various concerts recorded between 1998 and 2001. Halfway through that period, Oetz moved from Cologne, Germany, to San Diego. Yet, this doesn't feel like a transitional album. The artist voices his music firmly and leaves no clue as to the effect his new base of operation has had. In Cologne, Oetz has worked a lot with Phillips. Five of the ten tracks are duets with him. The similarities between mentor and pupil are obvious; nevertheless, the younger player establishes his own voice. The slow-paced "Nurdim" and the more feverish "Toqua" constitute highlights. Oetz gets more reflexive when playing solo. In "Konstantin," one can here his young son vocalizing in the audience. He instantly picks up the "contribution," first mimicking it, then developing phrases around it, all without breaking out of the path he was already exploring. But the best track remains his duet with West Coast drummer Stuart. The 13-minute "Frieden Bitte" (the longest piece on this CD) features them looking for a subtle balance between sound and silence. The subtlety of Stuart's playing brings the best out of the bassist who really goes out of his way to meet his level of quiet intensity. Fans of Phillips and Peter Kowald should lend an ear. This album is strong.

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