Blues for the Last Punk

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The group, consisting of leading European jazz-musicians, was formed in 1985. All members used to play traditional jazz and rock music and are now endeavouring to bring jazz and popular music closer together. In their programme they play compositions by Tony Lakatos, Attila László and Zoltán Csanyi. The orchestral part of this recording was done in 1987 at the Hungarian Radio.
Tony Lakatos was born in Budapest in 1958. He finished his studies in 1978 at the Béla Bartók Professional Music School of the jazz faculty, where he is now teaching. He has taken part in practically all forms of Hungarian jazz since the mid-seventies. He has participated in many international festivals, performing with his own group or with musicians such as Kenny Wheeler, Art Farmer, Toto Blanke, Jasper van’t Hof, Joachim Kühn, Charlie Mariano, Peter Herbolzheimer. Due to his individual style, he is now one of the leading European saxophonists.

Eastern Europe is moving towards the West – also musically. The International of jazz musicians has long transcended the boundaries of individual countries or systems. It is impossible to imagine Germany’s music scene without them, the jazzmen from Hungary. Names like Attila Zoller (guitar) or Aladar Pege (bass) have the best swinging sound the world over. The established newcomer Tony Lakatos has also made a name for himself in the past few years, especially in Toto Blanke’s and Jasper van’t Hof’s groups. Whether in clubs or at festivals, he has proved himself again and again to be a reliable partner and an exciting improviser. Jazzpoint now presents a recording of this saxophonist playing in the Hungarian capital with five of his compatriots. Budapest is, from the point of view of style, quite close to New York (and its European offshoots): harsh rhythms, sophisticated sound, compact arrangements. At first, the sound pattern is dominated by electronics – associations with the contemporary musical ideal of Miles Davis are inevitable. But before the music declines into mechanical sterility TONY LAKATOS’ expressive saxophone comes through to set a masterly counterpoint. It is this tension between rock-rhythmic precision and musical liberty in the improvisations that makes this record so intriguing. All the musicians know their craft. This is, of course, no wonder, considering that Hungary is the model of (early) music education in schools. Nor do they abandon their feeling for their own temperamental folk music. Incorporation, further development, fusion: this is good old blues to convince even the very last punk.... But don’t let the title scare you, fans. BLUES FOR THE LAST PUNK is, of course, not blues but solid rock, not without an element of thouhtfullness, sometimes coming close to melancholia sustained synthesizer notes provide a fitting contrast in mood. Rock is the dominant factor on this record, but not the dull, monotonous thuddering of steamhammers. The sextet from the Puszta are masters of the art of variety.


Jazzpoint (DE)
Things feat. Tony Lakatos
Blues for the Last Punk
tenor saxophone
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