Keith Jarrett Sleeper

Our rating 
5.0 out of 5 star rating 5.0

COMPOSERS: Keith Jarrett
ALBUM TITLE: Keith Jarrett Sleeper
WORKS: Sleeper
PERFORMER: Keith Jarrett (piano), Jan Garbarek (sax, flute, percussion), Palle Danielsson (bass), Jon Christensen (drums)


A sleeper indeed, given that this excellent recording of the quartet assembled by Jarrett – that recorded the Belonging album of 1974 and its three successors – has been in the archives since 1979, just like the last of its predecessors, Personal Mountains, released in the late 1980s. We aren’t told in whose archives or why, but this is a welcome find.

Recorded live in Tokyo, the disc serves up seven mainstays of this influential group’s repertoire in a recording that manages to be both spacious and intimate. And what’s most appealing is the impetus of the music; not that it’s literally fast and furious throughout, of course, as the programme is judiciously balanced, but there’s a very obvious sense of propulsion even in the slow passages. The pianist’s modulation-in-all-things approach draws a waywardly imaginative response from Garbarek and tight support from Danielsson and Christensen. Very good stuff.


Roger Thomas