With elective affinities which range from Hank Marvin and Hendrix to Mahler and Ligeti, Norwegian guitarist (and composer) Terje Rypdal
has fashioned an especially wide-ranging oeuvre, a good deal of which is in evidence throughout the 70 minutes of these Selected Recordings
. Ranging from 1971 to 1998, the 13 tracks feature Rypdal in a variety of settings, from trio to symphony orchestra. Overall, they supply rewarding evidence of Rypdal's blending of rock and jazz phrasing with a rubato concern for tone colour and dynamics often redolent of the classical world, and especially evident in the two selections from the 1974 album Whenever I Seem To Be Far Away
. As the title of that album suggests, Rypdal can be a heavyweight dreamer when he wants, and there's plenty of his trademark yearning here, epitomised by the magical one-and-a half minutes that is the solo feature "Transition". Elsewhere, we hear Rypdal with such distinctive fellow-Scandinavians as Palle Mikkelborg and Jon Christensen, Bjorn Kjellemyr and Audun Kleive. Unfortunately--and surprisingly--there is nothing here from the lovely album Rypdal made with cellist David Darling, nor anything from the superb Sea Quartet which featured Rypdal and Darling together with pianist Ketil Bjornstad and Jon Christensen. Such is the breadth of Rypdal's work on ECM, that maybe a second volume of his selected recordings is scheduled. Let's hope so. --Michael Tucker
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