This was the last album that launched musician, violinist and director Herman Clebanoff for the Mercury label. Mercury devised this recording for people who do not like country music trying to offer something exciting and new in that style. And Clebanoff with his large orchestral sound, his luxurious arrangements and instrumental treatment cascading effect, was a right director for this purpose. His string orchestra, supporting the variety and richness of the instruments, displays a friendly and dynamic repertoire of great country themes.
Soghomon Soghomonian, ordained and commonly known as Komitas, (Armenian: Կոմիտաս; 26 September 1869 – 22 October 1935) was an Armenian priest, musicologist, composer, arranger, singer, and choirmaster, who is considered the founder of Armenian national school of music. He is recognized as one of the pioneers of ethnomusicology.
From the title it's fairly obvious that Stanko is dedicating this work to his former boss and compatriot, the late Kryzsztof Komeda, who had passed a few years before. But it's difficult to believe that this was recorded in 1970. Stanko's quintet was so fully versed in the free jazz aesthetic and pursued to fuse it to the European classicism and avant-gardism of his native Poland. There are five tracks here, all part of a larger suite that is opened and closed by a theme. Stanko's writing is for a large harmonic palette realizable by two saxophones and his own trumpet with a rhythm section.
Athens-born and Munich-based composer Konstantia Gourzi makes her ECM New Series label debut. “What historical voices commingle in the current idiom of a composer whose cultural roots lie in the birthplace of rhetoric, but who emigrated to take a musical apprenticeship in European constructivism?” asks Ingrid Allwardt in the liner notes.