ERR03: Play Station 6: #1.

ERR03: Play Station 6: #1.
ERR03: Play Station 6: #1.
Label: Evil Rabbit Records
Catalog Number: ERR03
Availability: In Stock
Price: €14.50
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Maartje Ten Hoorn: violin 
Eric Boeren: trumpet 
Tobias Delius: tenorsax 
Achim Kaufmann: (prepared) piano
Meinrad Kneer: double bass
Paul Lovens: drums


01. Somorrostro (01:30)
02. Glorie van Holland (05:53)
03. Misty (02:40)
04. Unprepared (06:30)
05. Alone (05:12)
06. Outside Inside (02:20)
07. Man with Scythe (02:14)
08. Untitled (04:59)
09. MaJo’s Retreat (07:17)
10. Bravas (08:20)
11. The Black Box (02:34)
12. Alive and Cooking (02:16)
13. Forgiven (02:00)

Total Playing Time: 54:40

All compositions by ten Hoorn/ Boeren/ Delius/ Kaufmann/Kneer/Lovens.
All live improvisations, no overdubs, no edits. ©BUMA
Recorded 27-1-2006 by Stefan Deistler at Loft/ Cologne
Mixed and mastered by Frank van der Weij, Amsterdam
Design: Lysander LeCoultre
Photography: Monique Besten

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Almost all the most interesting jazz around at the moment is coming from European players and here's a bunch playing in a free idiom with intelligence and good humour. The better known members of Play Station 6 are saxophonist/clarinettist Tobias Delius, cornetist Eric Boeren (who, on form, is as good as New Jersey's Herb Robertson) and percussionist Paul Lovens. But arguably the greatest energy is provided by violinist Maartje ten Hoorn, pianist Achim Kaufmann (whose 'preparations' create sounds akin to a detuned zither) and bassist Meinrad Kneer, who also figures on the other Evil Rabbit release reviewed below. Recorded at the Loft in Cologne, this is as wonky as an afternoon on skunk in an Amsterdam coffee house and as exhilirating as jet-skiing the canals.

Brian Morton, The Wire, August 2007.

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Play Station 6 is a group of three Dutch players in the front line (Boeren, Delius, and ten Hoorn…Delius was actually born in the U.K. but has lived in Holland for over 25 years) and three Germans in the rhythm section (Kaufmann, Kneer, and Lovens). There’s been a lot of interchange between German and Dutch players since the first stirrings of European improvised music in the 1960s. Lovens, whose first recordings as a free improviser stem from around 1970, is one of the most distinctive stylists in the music and is one of the great texturalists among European Free Jazz drummers. Kaufmann is also a texturalist and he frequently can be found preparing the piano or working inside the instrument. I’m unfamiliar with Kneer but he has a nice big woody sound and his opening solo on “Alone” is a testament to a player who plays hard and with great facility. Ten Hoorn is an amazing violinist who’s been heard way too little. She’s also a player of great intensity and her kinetic, swirling lines are one of the major features of this group’s music. Boeren and Delius are closely associated with the New Dutch Swing players (with Available Jelly, I.C.P. Orchestra, and Bergin’s M.O.B.) but here show themselves to be equally adept at playing less extroverted styles of music. 

The music on #1 is true group music. No one is a dominant soloist and the spirit of communal music is maintained throughout. Upon listening, the CD’s statement that everything is improvised with no overdubs and no edits certainly rings true, rendering the conclusions of some of these pieces all the more remarkable. Some are very concise: five are less than three minutes. It’s difficult to get a duo or trio to be that concise, so it’s all the more amazing that this sextet scores on that mark. The music spans the gamut of free improvisational strategies from fullbore group charges to subtle sound explorations to solos, duos and trios. Play Station 6 offers another side of the Dutch improvisational music and it’s well worth checking out. 

Robert Iannapollo, Cadence Magazine, Sept. 2007