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Rarum 2: Selected Recordings (Dig)
Jan Garbarek
Rarum 2: Selected Recordings (Dig)
Genres: Jazz, Pop
  •  Track Listings (13) - Disc #1
  •  Track Listings (11) - Disc #2

One of the first eight releases in ECM's new rarum: series, Jan Garbarek's Selected Recordings is a two-disc overview put together by the artist. Pulling material from a label legacy that is 30 years long and 50 albums dee...  more »


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CD Details

All Artists: Jan Garbarek
Title: Rarum 2: Selected Recordings (Dig)
Members Wishing: 5
Total Copies: 0
Label: ECM Records
Release Date: 5/20/2002
Album Type: Original recording remastered
Genres: Jazz, Pop
Number of Discs: 2
SwapaCD Credits: 2
UPCs: 044001416521, 0044001416521

One of the first eight releases in ECM's new rarum: series, Jan Garbarek's Selected Recordings is a two-disc overview put together by the artist. Pulling material from a label legacy that is 30 years long and 50 albums deep, this is a great overview of the Norwegian saxophonist, whose sonorous tone can somehow be both fluid and brittle sounding. Jazz fans will no doubt be impressed with the list of jazz personnel featured here (Keith Jarrett, Bill Frisell, Charlie Haden, and others), but Garbarek has covered a lot of ground, recording material that also includes medieval choral music, Norwegian folk music, Indian music (featuring Trilok Gurtu, Shankar, and Zakir Hussain), and electronic music. No matter the context, Garbarek's music is forward looking, and his spare playing is as concise as it is tasteful. The sound has been remastered to the 24-bit 96-kHz format, making this already elegiac music sound as if it truly is coming from the heavens. --Tad Hendrickson

CD Reviews

Dubious selection, but excellently remastered
Gavin Wilson | 06/11/2002
(3 out of 5 stars)

"This is my third attempt at writing a review of this album for Amazon. I don't know why the previous two were rejected, as they were in much the same style as I would write for any music magazine. Conceivably my praise for this album was too fulsome, so I have shortened this review and stepped down my star rating.This compilation is an enjoyable romp through Jan Garbarek's ECM career, from the dark mysteries of AFTENLAND to the lightweight folk ditties of VISIBLE WORLD. When the chronicles of jazz history are written, his finest moments will probably be identified as being with Keith Jarrett's Nordic Quartet from 1974 to 1979. But before and since then, he has had a lucrative solo career, often leading his own band, playing sax (soprano and tenor) and electronic keyboards, often converting traditional Scandinavian songs into catchy numbers.Although most of the buyers of this album will be people who own some Garbarek and just want to hear some familiar stuff remastered and the best of the unfamiliar stuff, it is an excellent introduction for the novice. Garbarek's sax can be searing and abrasive one moment, then gorgeously tender the next.If you enjoy this album for its jazzy moments, go next to WITCHI TAI-TO, PERSONAL MOUNTAINS or MY SONG. If you prefer its rockier vibes, go straight to I TOOK UP THE RUNES."
Fair introduction to Garbarek's work
Gavin Wilson | 06/06/2002
(4 out of 5 stars)

"The rarum series are the second collection of compilations that ECM has done. The first occasion was in 1984 when the label wanted to demonstrate, to fans and novices alike, how much better the music sounded on CD. But the arrival of signalled the diminution of ECM's competitive advantage, which had been predicated on chamber-like recording quality, consistent album cover design and layout, and the use of better, thicker vinyl. With CD, ECM sounded much the same as all the other jazz labels.Now with rarum we have the chance to hear what ECM recordings are like in 24-bit remastered format. The sound is dangerously good: percussion and acoustic stringed instruments come out particularly well. I worry how much my bank balance will suffer if ECM decide to remaster my old favourites.For much of ECM's glory days, its bestselling artists were Keith Jarrett and Pat Metheny. Garbarek was thrust to the fore when Metheny left the label for Warner Music. One of the first albums Garbarek recorded after that event, the rock-oriented I TOOK UP THE RUNES, reached a wide audience, and we hear one track here.I don't like to complain about high-quality, good-value CDs, but there are two problems with the selection of tracks on this album. First, more music could have been squeezed on -- there's only 70 minutes' worth on the first CD, whereas the first rarum CD by Keith Jarrett exceeds 80 minutes. And second, the track selection has been somewhat lazy, picking the first tracks (not the best tracks) from each of I TOOK UP THE RUNES, VISIBLE WORLD and TWELVE MOONS.But Garbarek ought to be much better known in the States, and this could be the album that breaks open the market for him. People need to know that he has recorded so much more than the cute OFFICIUM classical crossover CD.This is the second-best of the rarum collection (Keith Jarrett gets my top vote), but it is strongly recommended nonetheless."