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Tuesday Wonderland

3.8 out of 5 stars 19 customer reviews

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Audio CD, April 10, 2007
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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Currently one of Europe's leading forces in the jazz world, e.s.t. (Esbj”rn Svensson Trio) brings their unique and unmistakable sound stateside with the release of their new album, Tuesday Wonderland. This album is an eclectic mix of classical, melodic jazz and electronics with the feel of an energetic pop/rock show, making it a must-have for all music lovers. Esbj”rn Svensson (piano), Dan Berglund (double bass) and Magnus ™str”m (drums) are the talented threesome who make up e.s.t. Tuesday Wonderland marks their tenth album and possibly their best to date by expanding on the formula of fusing traditional jazz, funk and rock to make a tapestry of music that grabs hold of the listener. This combination creates a musical journey full of emotions and textures that allow each song to build on the other. Formed in 1990, the trio have been amazing fans and critics alike ever since. In 1995 and 1996 Svensson was awarded Swedish Jazz musician of the Year and Songwriter of the Year in 1998. The 2005 release of Viaticum garnered the band their second Swedish Grammyr in the Best Jazz Album category and most recently Tuesday Wonderland, released in Europe in September 2006, was nominated in that category as well. The media has been equally enthralled with the trio. World-renowned jazz magazine, Downbeat, had e.s.t. as the first European jazz band ever to grace their cover and The New York Times has been quoted as saying they are one of the most talked about groups currently on the European circuit. e.s.t. 's upcoming U.S. tour kicks off at New York City's famed Merkin Hall on April 14th in support of Tuesday Wonderland, in stores April 10th on Emarcy.

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E.S.T. like to play with expectations, and they begin Tuesday Wonderland as you might assume, with a spare solo piano line hinting at a delicate baroque counterpoint. It's the kind of feather-stroked chamber jazz they've been working for a few years now. But just as you settle in, crushing drums and fuzzed arco bass drop in a groove from the apocalypse. This ominous track, "Fading Maid Preludium," and its second half, "Fading Maid Postludium," frame Tuesday Wonderland, setting in bas-relief an album of careening, intuitive improvisation. E.S.T. are frighteningly varied in their technique and deep in their understanding of jazz lore. You can hear echoes of Keith Jarrett and Ahmad Jamal in pianist Esbjörn Svensson, from whom the trio take their name, but he also embraces a more modern vocabulary, hinting at Cecil Taylor while dancing gospel vamps and dropping rock power-chords. Drummer Magnus Öström can lay down the shuffling brush strokes of "The Goldhearted Miner," pour out a progressive rock fusillade, or do a ballet of polyrhythmic shadings and colors that recall the late Steve McCall. The real chameleon of the group is bassist Dan Berglund. He plays soulful, muscular double bass lines, but he also triggers a synthesizer for both subtle shading and the hellion roar heard on that opening track. E.S.T. remain a group exploring the edges of jazz improvisation, managing to be free and intuitive while also maintaining melodic and rhythmic touchstones. Tracks like "Brewery of Beggars" are multipart journeys shifting from gentle lyricism to electric storms. E.S.T. have evolved from being the most ECM-like band that wasn't on ECM into their own natural and thoroughly modern hybrid. --John Diliberto
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Product Details

  • Performer: Esbjorn Svensson Trio, E.S.T.
  • Audio CD (April 10, 2007)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: EmArcy
  • ASIN: B000NOKA9Y
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (19 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #167,223 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Audio CD
This piano-led trio have carved out a space somewhere between the thoughtful European jazz of Keith Jarrett and the atmospheric textures of Sigur Rós or Radiohead.
Their last album sold many thousands copies and they fill the major concert halls in Europe.
This is their 10th album, and the major influence is Bach, most noticeably in the mathematical purity of tracks such as Beggar's Blanket.

From the opening classical piano pattern disrupted by a guitar power chord, "Tuesday Wonderland" avoids the usual melody-improvisation-melody structure beloved of most jazz bands.
It may be too introverted for some, but E.S.T. balance this with expressive solos to make their most accomplished record yet.
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Format: Audio CD
In the beginning it was Sweden, then Europe and now it's the world. The rise and rise of EST has been remarkable in recent years - in the USA they were the first ever European jazz group to feature on the cover of Downbeat magazine, while their intro to Japan's top promoter was on the recommendation of Keith Jarrett. If any one is in any doubt about how original, absorbing and dynamic this band is, then get "Tuesday Wonderland", their tenth album.

From the étude-like opening ("Fading Maid Preludium") that explodes into post Hendrix power-chords to the focused beauty of "Where We Used To Live", this remarkable group is one of the few bands on the current scene that can be truly called sui generis - for evidence of this try the shifting tone colours of the title track.

What is even more remarkable is that Bach's Well Tempered Clavier could inspire such a wide range of moods.

Esbjörn Svensson (pianist), Dan Berglund (bassist) and Magnus Öström (drummer).
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Format: Audio CD
Though I don't own every E.S.T. recording, I do own a good number of them so when I compare them I don't understand how any reviewer could rate Tuesday Wonderland at less than at least three stars. What is it the negative reviewers are not hearing that I am hearing?
There is a lot to like here. Fading Maid Preludium opens the album in a stately manner that promises greatness to come. That is followed by the melodic title cut which is sometimes evocative of Bob James and Joe Sample. Then later Brewery of Beggars heats to a furious boil, simmers down, then boils again. Dolores in A Shoestand is a nearly nine-minute workout that could almost be said to be radio friendly. Eighthundred Streets By Feet is a very relaxing, introspective cut followed immediately by the rolling gallop of Goldwrap. The CD closes on a note that mirrors its opening then segues after a long pause into one of the signature "secret" tunes of which the trio seems to be fond.
Tuesday Wonderland gives you well over an hour of inventive and cerebral jazz from Sweden's finest jazz trio. While it is not my favorite E.S.T. recording, there is more than enough good music here to keep me returning to it time and again.
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Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
I listen to a lot of music, and usually enjoy a steady stream of new music. I have to say this recording stands out head and shoulders above most. It is lively and vibrant, a bit experimental at times, soothing and sophisticated at others. Esbjorn's piano is very inventive and the others (bass and drums) do a great job of keeping up, filling out and holding it up.

I like this much more than the only other EST recording I've heard, the earlier Somewhere Else Before.
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Format: Audio CD
Overview:
Tuesday Wonderland takes everything e.s.t. has been doing to the next level. Here they have crafted a complete album with a totally unique mood, texture, and sound that flows beautifully from start to finish. What differentiates album this from other e.s.t. albums is that this is not a collection of great songs, it is a conceptual album. Each song is a crafted composition and fits the overall theme of the album perfectly. It reminds me a great deal on a conceptual level of Pink Floyd's the Wall. While e.s.t. has always been creative with the sounds they employ they've really integrated them well here. Dan Berglund's distorted bass and bowing opens the album and sets the tone. Immediately you are lost in Wonderland. Svensson's use of a piece of paper in the piano strings creates a tinny ghost town effect on several tracks. It is easy to drift off in this surrealistic soundscape. While I love all e.s.t. albums I've heard, this one grows on me with each successive listen, and I think it is the most unique performance they have done.

Song Highlights:

Fading Maid Preludium - This song opens with a haunting piano line. Berglund then comes crashing in with a bomb of a distorted bass bowed line. Immediately you are transported to Wonderland.

Tuesday Wonderland - This is reminds me of "dodge the dodo" from an earlier e.s.t. work. It is instantly accessible, and the most catchy of all the tunes on the album. The song starts with a really snappy intertwined section consisting of a cool piano riff, bass line, and drum line. This song shows off everything great about e.s.t. Perhaps this is e.s.t.'s best song of all time.

The Goldhearted Miner - This song features soft brush strokes and a shuffle beat on the drums.
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