'Callithump' is a pure analog vinyl LP in a strictly limited and numbered edition of 500 copies.
The starting-point of each production is the primary focus on the challenge that artist, space and technique form a symbiosis. Every music recording follows its own rules, there is no valid basic formula. The choice of the interpreter, of the repertoire, the instrumentation, the place and the recording technique has to be constantly questioned. In the case of the recording of »Callithump« by the American pianist and composer Uri Caine all elements form a wonderful unity.
»Callithump« is Uri Caine's second piano solo album. All compositions are penned by himself and have been written specifically for this project. For the recording session producer Stefan Winter chooses Avatar Studios in Manhattan, New York (formerly known under the name The Power Station). This legendary Studio A is made for music, captivates through its outstanding room sound and exquisite analog technique. On a specially selected Steinway grand piano Caine performs his solo works. This album is recorded in one breath without editing live-to-analog-two-track. Second takes do not exist, everything is cast in one piece. This music carries the tension of a deeply felt concert, performed for one single person who is alone with the artist at an ideal place.
Uri Caine prepares the compositions for this recording like a circle or parade of sometimes – deep in the inside – irritating songs. Since his early piece Yellow Stars in Heaven, firstly released on the album »Toys« in 1995 (JMT Edition / Winter&Winter), Caine deals with the Shoah, but also the musical roots of Gustav Mahler. Besides influences of classical composers such as Mahler, Johann Sebastian Bach, but also George Gershwin and the Tin Pan Alley, Caine refers as much to jazz musicians like "Fats" Waller, Herbie Hancock or Thelonious Monk, whom he honours with his very first production »Sphere Music«.
Uri Caine has chosen the title »Callithump« as this word describes a somewhat riotous parade with the blowing of tin horns and other discordant noises and also a burlesque serenade. His oeuvre seems like a walk through the music history of the last 300 years and into the future. The composition Callithump opens this album as a seemingly exuberant, almost grotesque piece with wild sound cascades. In his music Caine repeatedly conceals allusions to other composers' works and jazz soloists. In the second part Jewish motives, which Gustav Mahler used as well, come to light almost imperceptibly. Sepharad is the Hebrew name for Spain, a term describing the Western end of the known world in the Old Testament, which was until the 15th century resort for many Jews after their expulsion from the Holy Land, then the Catholic Church discriminated and banished them. Uri Caine's unmistakeable, lyric playing comes to full effect in Map of the Heart. With virtuosity he introduces Greasy – a slight reference of his respect for Thomas "Fats" Waller – and the rhythmical Chanson de Johnson.
In-between these two pieces Caine places the ballad-like The Magic of her Nearness. Continually Caine inserts quotes – sometimes hidden – in order to abandon them again. Bow Bridge is a bridge in New York's Central Park, the railing resembles interweaving circles. With Everything is Bullshit Caine carries on with his burlesque stories, some sounds remember of the Tin Pan Alley, that once used to be full of life in the middle of Manhattan. He strolls through this street and reflects the sounds, coming from open windows, in his music. Raindrop Prelude becomes a wonderful soundscape. Perving Berlin is a little play of words but also a musical game, again Caine adds short, winking citations to his works. This solo album closes with Dotted Eyes and leaves inside the listener still after the last tone an intensive excitement.
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