Misha Mengelberg is an important enough figure that even his lesser efforts reward serious listeners. Of course, his approach often makes the question of what’s lesser or greater difficult, as at times the whole idea seems to be to make us rethink the listening process. The first track features a highly personal version of the kind of rapid-fire running around that most pianists since Cecil Taylor have done, and this is the easiest listening one gets on Solo. One title refers to Richard Wagner, so perhaps a specific kind of deconstruction is going on, but the composer evoked without having more clues is again Satie-not the Satie of the “Gymnopedies” but that of “Sports et Divertissements.”
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