On An Affair With Strauss, trumpeter-flugelhornist Franz Koglmann directs the Monoblue Quartet (Tony Coe on clarinet and tenor sax, and one noteworthy vocal; Burkhard Stangl on guitar; and Peter Hubert on bass) and trains their ears on Vienna and the spirit of Johann Strauss the Younger. He borrows themes from the Strauss oeuvre, “thereby enhancing the Vienna element, while always looking at it through the eyes of cool chamber jazz.” The group effectively pulls the rug of the familiar out from under the grand traditions of the Viennese waltz, while retaining the elegance right up until the closing rendition of “Good Night, Vienna,” which is well and clearly sung by Tony Coe-despite the presence of his tongue in his cheek and a full complement of kitschy flourishes.
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