Artist/Composer:Schiefel / Daerr / Lukács / Szandai
 Title:Gondellied in the Sahara
(P) 2010
What has a piano piece by Mendelssohn got to do with Gospel? What’s has Johann Sebastian Bach got to do with the pop-punk group The Cure? And free jazz improvisation with Hungarian folklore sounds? Between these disparate poles (and a few others) an interesting quartet finds its musical coordinates...


Text des Beihefts


01. Manila
6:30
02. Tea in the Sahara
5:08
03. Talk to me
3:24
04. Präludium No. 3
4:34
05. Standard without Words
4:20
06. Baby Levi
6:47
07. Out of Nowhere
0:59
08. Gordon Matthew
4:19
09. Dunes on Piazza San Marco
1:51
10. Gondellied
4:50
11. Boys don't cry
3:32
12. Kinderstück
4:20

 Total time: 50:50
Performers
Michael Schiefel - voice, electronics
Carsten Daerr - piano, organ
Miklós Lukács - cimbalom
Mátyás Szandai - double bass
Production notes:
Compositions by Carsten Daerr (1, 6, 8); Gordon Matthew (2); J. S. Bach (4); Felix Mendelssohn arranged by Michael Schiefel and Carsten Daerr (5, 10, 12); Michael Dempsey, Robert Smith, Lol Tolhurst, (11); collective improvisations (3, 7, 9)
Recorded by Péter Glaser at Star-Track Studio, Budapest, 16-18 May, 2010
Mixed and mastered by Péter Erdélyi at Artfield Studio, Piliscsaba
Photo: István Huszti
Artwork & design > www.bachman.hu

Produced by László Gőz
Label manager: Tamás Bognár

Supported by Goethe-Institut Budapest and the National Cultural Fund of Hungary

The recording was made in coproduction with the Mediawave Festival, Őriszentpéter
Festival director: Jenő Hartyándi; coordinator: Péter Pusker

Michael Schiefel and Carsten Daerr appear courtesy of Traumton Records (www.traumton.de)
Special thanks to Stefanie Marcus

Jonathan Glusman - Jazzman / Jazz Magazin (fr)
Franpi Barriaux - Citizen Jazz (fr)
Koen Van Meel - Kwadratuur (fl)
Luca Pagani - All About Jazz - Italia (ita)
Turi Gábor - Gramofon (hu)
Végső Zoltán - Élet és Irodalom (hu)
Márton Attila - Magyar Demokrata (hu)
Czékus Mihály - Gondola.hu (hu)
Jávorszky Béla Szilárd - Népszabadság (hu)
Sinkovics Ferenc - Magyar Hírlap (hu)
Komlós József Jr. - Kecskenet.hu (hu)

Click on the image for higher resolution!What has a piano piece by Mendelssohn got to do with Gospel? What’s has Johann Sebastian Bach got to do with the pop-punk group The Cure? And free jazz improvisation with Hungarian folklore sounds? Between these disparate poles (and a few others) an interesting quartet finds its musical coordinates.

The singer Michael Schiefel is a whole story in his own right. First of all because of his unusual voice: as clear as the tone of a flute, as explosive as a soul-shouter, as quicksilver as Charlie Parker’s bebop. To become a jazz singer, Schiefel went to Berlin at the beginning of the 90s. There he made himself a name as a big band frontman in the Thärichens Tentett, in the quintet jazzIndeed and in 2006 in the Live Ensemble from Carla Bleys’ Escalator over the Hill (replacing Phil Minton) – just to name a few groups in which he plays all over the world. At his many solo concerts (and now also on 4 CDs) he accompanies himself with loops, and modulates his voice with a tailor-made multi-effect device. At the same time, Schiefel is constantly looking for new music constellations – and started to work with the pianist Carsten Daerr in 2008.

Dearr, one of the creative protagonists on the young German jazz scene, started to compose as a young man, and was inspired by the classical avant-garde, and of them not least Béla Bartok and György Ligeti. His compositions such as Manila and Baby Levi (which come from the repertoire of the Carsten Daerr Trio) draw their strength from melodious-rhythmical structures, fundamentals which are equally present in the ‘serious’ western music tradition and in the multiple forms of contemporary pop-music. Gordon Matthew – this very same impassioned homage à Sting, the composer of Tea in the Sahara, – tells of Daerrs (and Schiefel’s) experiences with the epoch-making Punk/Pop/Reggae mix from The Police.


173Three compositions by Felix Mendelssohn (the very ‘inventor’ of Johann Sebastian Bach), completed with Präludium 3, are the thread of Ariadne through the album. As under a magnifying glass, the fine art of the Quartett becomes clear. Schiefel performs as a voice-band instrumentalist, without text, but also without any scat-routine: Daerr skims along the interface between romantic contemplation and the spirit of Gospel while Matyas Szandai, a solid bass, anchors the interpretation, sometimes in the folklore of his Hungarian motherland (standard without words), or sometimes in the tradition of jazz. In fact he has himself contributed to this tradition for a long time: as a sideman for Archie Shepp, Charlie Mariano, Chris Potter and others, as a partner of percussionist Hamid Drake in the Tartim-Band of Viktor Tóth, and also as a colleague of the cimbalomist Miklós Lukács in Mihály Dresch’s Quartet.

Miklós Lukács weaves his cimbalom into the sound of the quartet like a second piano – liberated from the keyboard and the mechanism. However the sound of his instrument remains an important symbol for many connections: we can always hear Hungary in the purring of the strings, from the Gypsy or Roma music to Liszt, Bartók, Kodály and Péter Eötvös. Miklós Lukács himself is not only a virtuoso from the broad cimbalon tradition: in Mihály Dresch’s Quartet, in a duo with Béla Szakcsi Lakatos and with his own Miklós Lukács Quintet, he has brought the cimbalom into the jazz of the twenty-first century.

In the end, the title of the album is no more unusual. Only where the world is flat is it impossible to start anything with a gondola song in the desert.

Tobias Richtsteig
Translated by Richard Robinson

Booking: shoestring_jazz_booking (shoestring-jazz.de)