Album Remarks & Appraisals:
Top notch 70s fusion jazz performance. Before they recorded “Nothing but a Party”, his fellow musicians sang “Happy Birthday to You”; Alphonse Mouzon celebrated his 29th birthday during the November 1977 MPS session in Stuttgart, Germany. The American drummer is one of the originators of jazz-rock, the fusion of jazz and rock music; “Incest is best” was German rocker Udo Lindenberg’s comment on the coupling. No one had a better understanding of this melding of jazz polyrhythms with rock’s pulsating beat than Mouzon; with his furious propulsive style, he was welcome in both camps. Weather Report founders Joe Zawinul, Wayne Shorter, and Miroslav Vitous brought him into the premier edition of the band. Mouzon and bassist Vitous made up the rhythm section. From Prague, Czech, Miroslav had also played in Miles Davis’ band. As he had already shown with Weather Report, he demonstrates how well he could integrate acoustic bass into a jazz-rock concept. In duo with Mouzon, Vitous bows the deep tones on his composition “The Light”; he grabs the electric bass on the other compositions. Vitous as well as saxophonist Bob Malik and keyboard player Stan Goldberg were all part of the 1977 version of Mouzon’s touring band. Pianist/keyboarder Joachim Kühn and guitarist Philip Catherine joined the troupe for the recording of “In Search of a Dream”. Thus, the session was a sort of summit meeting of the jazz-rock elite of that time.”
Liner Note Author: Hans Hielscher.
Recording information: Zuckerfabrik, Stuttgart, Germany (11/1977).
This is an obscure Alphonse Mouzon recording, which, along with Mind Transplant, accounts for Mouzon's best work as a solo artist. The presence of former Weather Report band mate Miroslav Vituous provides for much of the session's excitement ("The Light" being a standout). Fusion vets Philip Catherine, Stu Goldberg, and Joachim Kuhn also turn in fine performances, as does the relatively unknown Bob Malik. There is a great deal of integrity on this session, a quality that was often missing from Mouzon sessions both before and after this. Highly recommended. ~ Robert Taylor