Fusion / Third Stream / Jazz Related Rock / Post-Fusion Contemporary / Jazz Related Soundtracks / Eclectic Fusion • Norway
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Terje Rypdal was born in Oslo, August 23rd 1947. He is known as one of the leading modern jazz guitarists in Europe. At the same time he is regarded to be an outstanding composer of contemporary art music. Rypdal has has a multifarious musical career since he started his pop band “The Vanguards” in the 1960'ies. He later started up “Dream” where his interest for jazz was awakened. In 1969 he joined the Jan Garbarek Quartet. At the same time he even played in George Russell's Sextet and big band. Rypdal has up through the years composed numerous jazz compositions for own as well as other groups. Terje Rypdal played the piano from he was five years old, and started up with guitar from the age of 13. As a guitaist he is selftaught. He has studied musicology at the University in Oslo. During the years 1970-72 he studied composition with read more...
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TERJE RYPDAL Discography

TERJE RYPDAL albums / top albums

TERJE RYPDAL The Dream : Get Dreamy album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
The Dream : Get Dreamy
Fusion 1967
TERJE RYPDAL Bleak House album cover 3.60 | 6 ratings
Bleak House
Fusion 1968
TERJE RYPDAL Min Bul (with Bjørnar Andresen, Espen Rud) album cover 3.96 | 4 ratings
Min Bul (with Bjørnar Andresen, Espen Rud)
Fusion 1970
TERJE RYPDAL Hår album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Jazz Related Soundtracks 1971
TERJE RYPDAL Terje Rypdal album cover 4.10 | 10 ratings
Terje Rypdal
Fusion 1971
TERJE RYPDAL Whenever I Seem to Be Far Away album cover 4.19 | 7 ratings
Whenever I Seem to Be Far Away
Fusion 1974
TERJE RYPDAL What Comes After album cover 4.00 | 11 ratings
What Comes After
Fusion 1974
TERJE RYPDAL Odyssey album cover 3.55 | 11 ratings
Fusion 1975
TERJE RYPDAL After the Rain album cover 3.77 | 11 ratings
After the Rain
Fusion 1976
TERJE RYPDAL Waves album cover 4.02 | 10 ratings
Fusion 1978
TERJE RYPDAL Terje Rypdal / Miroslav Vitous / Jack DeJohnette album cover 4.00 | 10 ratings
Terje Rypdal / Miroslav Vitous / Jack DeJohnette
Fusion 1979
TERJE RYPDAL Descendre album cover 4.00 | 12 ratings
Fusion 1980
TERJE RYPDAL To Be Continued album cover 4.30 | 5 ratings
To Be Continued
Fusion 1981
TERJE RYPDAL Terje Rypdal, David Darling : Eos album cover 4.38 | 4 ratings
Terje Rypdal, David Darling : Eos
Post-Fusion Contemporary 1984
TERJE RYPDAL Chaser album cover 4.68 | 5 ratings
Fusion 1985
TERJE RYPDAL Blue album cover 4.10 | 5 ratings
Fusion 1987
TERJE RYPDAL The Singles Collection album cover 4.06 | 5 ratings
The Singles Collection
Fusion 1989
TERJE RYPDAL Undisonus album cover 3.75 | 2 ratings
Third Stream 1990
TERJE RYPDAL Q.E.D. album cover 2.75 | 2 ratings
Third Stream 1993
TERJE RYPDAL If Mountains Could Sing album cover 4.50 | 4 ratings
If Mountains Could Sing
Fusion 1994
TERJE RYPDAL Skywards album cover 4.50 | 4 ratings
Fusion 1997
TERJE RYPDAL Rypdal & Tekro album cover 2.50 | 1 ratings
Rypdal & Tekro
Jazz Related Rock 1997
TERJE RYPDAL Rypdal & Tekro II album cover 2.50 | 1 ratings
Rypdal & Tekro II
Jazz Related Rock 1998
TERJE RYPDAL Double Concerto / 5th Symphony album cover 2.75 | 2 ratings
Double Concerto / 5th Symphony
Third Stream 2000
TERJE RYPDAL The Radiosong album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
The Radiosong
Fusion 2002


TERJE RYPDAL live albums

TERJE RYPDAL Lux Aeterna album cover 2.98 | 5 ratings
Lux Aeterna
Fusion 2002
TERJE RYPDAL Sonata op. 73 / Nimbus op. 76 - Birgitte Stærnes album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Sonata op. 73 / Nimbus op. 76 - Birgitte Stærnes
Third Stream 2002
TERJE RYPDAL Vossabrygg album cover 3.17 | 7 ratings
Fusion 2006
TERJE RYPDAL Crime Scene album cover 3.83 | 5 ratings
Crime Scene
Eclectic Fusion 2010
TERJE RYPDAL Melodic Warrior album cover 2.83 | 3 ratings
Melodic Warrior
Third Stream 2013

TERJE RYPDAL demos, promos, fans club and other releases (no bootlegs)

TERJE RYPDAL re-issues & compilations

TERJE RYPDAL Works album cover 4.50 | 1 ratings
Fusion 1985
TERJE RYPDAL Selected Recordings album cover 5.00 | 1 ratings
Selected Recordings
Fusion 2002
TERJE RYPDAL Odyssey - In Studio & In Concert album cover 4.75 | 2 ratings
Odyssey - In Studio & In Concert
Fusion 2012

TERJE RYPDAL singles (0)

TERJE RYPDAL movies (DVD, Blu-Ray or VHS)

.. Album Cover
0.00 | 0 ratings
Trio Rypdal Vitous Gurtu Live In Stuttgart
Fusion 2009



Album · 1985 · Fusion
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Steve Wyzard

Many longtime Rypdal listeners pour contempt on his work from the 1980s, preferring instead to bow and worship before the altar of his 1970s albums. To this day, recordings such as What Comes After, Whenever I seem to be Far Away, Odyssey, Waves, and even After the Rain (a far inferior album) have passionately devoted cult followings. For 1985's Chaser, Rypdal opts for a simple power trio, with relatively little keyboards and no brass, woodwinds, or string orchestras. Bassist Bjorn Kjellemyr and drummer Auden Kleive would also accompany Rypdal on his next few albums, but none would have the fire, the intensity, the imagination, or the radical mood-swings of Chaser.

How can any Rypdal fan not be utterly floored by his howling, ferocious solo over a Kleive drum intro on "Ambiguity", one of his greatest recorded moments ever? Said solo suddenly staggers into rhythmic anthem rock just past the 3:10 mark before the original mood is finally resumed at the end. Turn it up to 20! Rypdal's furious, both-blues-and-jazz-influenced soloing has never been better heard or recorded. For further proof, listen to the wandering fluidity/rhythmic riffing of "Geysir" or the angular, frenzied, pseudo-soundtrack work of "Chaser".

What may rub some listeners the wrong way are the dramatic, atmospheric changes-of-pace inserted between the fiery improvising and faster-paced numbers. "Once upon a time", "A Closer Look", and "Ornen" all follow a similar pattern: slow, smoldering blues compositions that build to a guitar climax with much space for Kjellemyr and Kleive to add subtle, introspective solos. "Transition" is a brief guitar-over-keyboards piece, and "Imagi (Theme)" bids this world farewell-before-departure with tuned percussion and long-sustained tones that sound very close to guitar synth (which they very well may be, although the credits do not mention any guitar synth). In fact, this track points ahead to Rypdal's next album, 1987's Blue, which featured the same line-up but with more experimental gadgets, more keyboards, and is a much shorter and less memorable album than the austere-but-streamlined Chaser.

Many have suggested (or outright proclaimed) that Terje Rypdal is Norway's answer to Jimi Hendrix, Bill Frisell, or Steve Howe, when in actuality he is truly a category all to himself. While definitely an acquired taste, Chaser is his best album of the decade and one of his best ever. It is not a jazz album, a headbanging album, a blues album, or an experimental album, but a world of its own. Previous experience with Rypdal's playing is recommended but not necessary. I remain at a loss to understand why this set has been so maligned over the years. Maybe the backlash has more to do with the very un-ECM album cover rather than the brilliant playing and performances.

TERJE RYPDAL Min Bul (with Bjørnar Andresen, Espen Rud)

Album · 1970 · Fusion
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Beginning in 1971, Norwegian guitarist, Terje Rypdal, became one of the most respected ECM label artists with a big collection of good and even great albums. Being an experimental musician by nature, his output spans jazz-rock,as well as classic and modern eclectic fusion. Probably in Terje's case, four decades of collaboration with ECM was a positive factor - he stayed as one of the label's few artists with a very personal musical face, and at the same time got wide distribution and support from the established music company.

Besides Rypdal's ECM history, there exists a much smaller, but interesting collection of his releases on other labels. His most interesting releases are his albums from the late 60s and very early 70s. His debut, "Bleak House", (on Norwegian Polydor) was re-released many times (on vinyl and CD) around Europe and Japan and is quite well known. His second release (on the same label), "Min Bul", came out in 1970 and stayed in the shade till now. Actually it was re-released (for the first time) in 2003 by EmArcy in Europe on CD (the other reissue is Norwegian collectible vinyl on Panorama,2008) but still, many of Rypdal's fans don't know this album even exists.

It's a pity, "Min Bul" is a highly experimental work for its time. On this album, a Norwegian guitar-bass-drums trio lead by Terje plays electric, often scratchy and even noisy fusion on the edge of avant garde jazz. The nearest work to compare to is probably Miles Davis' "A Tribute to Jack Johnson" , but it was released a year later! On the other hand, the same label (Polydor) released albums of similar concept that same year, (Jack Bruce "Things We Like" with John McLaughlin, Dick Heckstall-Smith and Jon Hiseman), but Terje's work is much more experimental and mature.

This album's opener, "I Cried A Million Tears Last Night", is one of the very early prototypes of NY downtown noisy guitar avant-garde that would be coming many years later. Probably nowadays, listeners might find some of the album's moments a bit dated, but it is undoubtedly a valuable historical release.


Album · 1975 · Fusion
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Sean Trane
Terje’s continuing adventures with ECM were beginning to transform in a love affair, to the point that Manfred allowed Rypdal to release a double disc affair, which I believe in 75 was the label’s first. This album features the usual “Rypdal Norwegian Whale-fishing crew” suspects, despite the strange choice of a trombonist as the unique horn player, outside of the master’s own sax twiddlings. Apparently the remaster of this album lists also a French horn player as well, and this could be explained that he only appeared on side 4 of the album, which is not on the first CD reissue. Oh BTW, the album’s name has nothing to do with mythology, so if you’re into concept album, you’ll be disappointed.

Anyway, we’re facing a relatively quiet album, with plenty of atmospheric moments, most of it created by Blix’s organ (no other Kb played), but also Terje’s strident and aerial guitar wails. Indeed, by the time of this album’s release, Terje was fine-tuning his typical guitar style (well somewhere between Oldfield and Hackett), and he’ll have plenty of time to achieve it over the course of these two discs. Lengthy and gliding tracks like Midnite, Adagio, Fare Well are just excuses to allow Terje to wail, soar, reign, dominate his team-mates heads and shoulders. Actually, when not on his guitar, Rypda is laying out some synth layers from his String Ensemble rig, but he’s not a Tangerine Dream member, and there are way too many useless meanders and other lengths (thinking of Adagio amongst other), and the whole thing is uneventful. One could call this album “new age” if the term had been coined much sooner, so I suppose that many described it as cosmic or spacey, which I think might be a tad misleading, partly because of Rypdal’s guitar sometimes leaving its annoying aerial wails to come down and growl a bit in the lower registers, like in my album-fave Better Off Without You, and Birkerot, where he really unleashes. Fare Well is actually quite annoying, because Terje’s strident guitars are really aggravating and irritating to my left ear, and switching channel speakers won’t help, because after two minutes, the right ear is sore. Ballade is self-explanatory and boring except maybe for Terje’s guitar growls when it doesn’t soar searingly.

A rare double ECM album, but given the result, no wonder Manfred didn’t release that many more and its CD reissue has been shortened by the D-sidelong Rolling Stone track; which by its name, might have been the rockier or energetic track of the album. Never heard it, though. This is the kind of ECM album that you can feel glad it has an end and relief comes once it stops spinning or by pushing the eject button. Definitely not my cup of tea, outside two or three (shorter) tracks.

TERJE RYPDAL Whenever I Seem to Be Far Away

Album · 1974 · Fusion
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Sean Trane
I’m not sure whether this is Rypdal’s second or third ECM album, but it’s one of the rockier ones, despite its schizophrenic nature. With its polar cap ice debacle artwork, this album features some of Terje’s best musical buddies, and it was recorded in Oslo in 74. On the present, Rypdal concentrates on the guitar (no kb or horns), which allows his compadres to fully develop their roles.

Opening on the energetic 14-mins Silver Bird, Rypdal’s guitar takes on an early Coryell-feel, and it grabs the JR/F fans by the guts, as we’re hoping for McLaughlin-like fireworks, which somewhat unfortunately won’t happen, because the song doesn’t allow it. Progheads will be pleased to hear some gorgeous washes of mellotron that add a bit of tension and drama. Excellent stuff, with Hovensjo’s bass playing adding much interest to the calmer moments. The following Hunt piece features the same line-up, with a rhythmic intro at first, and then a brooding mellotron underlining Terje’s excellent guitar parts. More great stuff.

On the flipside, the sidelong title track features some string musicians from a local symphonic orchestra, and the subtitle indicates well its content: guitar, string, oboe and clarinet. Hovering between Russian composers and symphonico-ambient music (future “new age”), the track meanders too much and too long, before taking off of to the skies. In some ways, this track announces the lengthy voids of his next album Odyssey, with his searing and soaring guitar that will be reminiscent to Steve Hackett fans; but the orchestral arrangements are an asset that the next venture won’t have. Fairly cheesy, but impressive nonetheless.

Well despite two vastly different vinyl facets, the A-side is sufficiently strong enough to gather my favours and the symphonic side is impressive enough to let me enter the album in my all-time top 10 ECM releases.


Album · 1968 · Fusion
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Sean Trane
Those of you who know Rypdal’s usual works will be in for quite surprise with this debut album, Bleak House released in early 69 on the Polydor label, and it is quite different to his later works with the ECM label. Indeed, this album’s line-up is mostly made from local Norwegian musicians (although I detect a few Danish or German names), of which only Garbarek and Terje are the familiar names to an international crowd. You’ll also find some excellent (and rather unusual for jazz) Hammond organ, some vocals, and a fairly large horn section, used somewhat sparingly. Rather strange when you know Terje’s late-70’s albums, right?

The opening 7-mins Dead Man Tale is a mid-tempo blues loaded with Hammond’s organ, Terje’s lungs both belting out a soft vocal and an enchanting flute. He 4-mins Wes is more of a big band affair, with some massive horn section sounds, a Reinhardt-ian guitar and some enthralling rhythms. The three-parts Winter Serenade is in contrast a very different affair, so quiet in its Falling Snow movement, with only Terje’s guitar and Reim’s piano. When Garbarek and Neumann’s saxophones enter the piece, chaos and mayhem appear, indeed hinting at the Snow Storm movement. The suite ends calmly as the Snow Melts gently with Reim’s piano. Great stuff.

On the flipside, the 7-mins title track is an absolutely amazing mid-tempo big band piece, starting gently with the horn section providing great answers to Rypdal wild but restrained electric guitar. It’s not long before the horns take up the whole back space, before Terje’s guitar goes for some heroics, never too strident, leaving some space for Garbrek’s dramatic sax solo, and then taking football all the way down the rest of the track to the end zone for an amazing touchdown. Fantastic stuff, even if you wished some slight chord changes in the brass arrangements. The soft big-band Sonority is a slow-paced gentle track, where Rypdal’s sleepy guitar weeps gently from you speakers. Closing the album, Terje scats gently A Feeling Of Harmony all alone, his acoustic guitar, his sole voice and his gentle flute.

A little short for an album, this generally overlooked effort is one of Terje’s less representative albums, but it doesn’t make it anyless essential a listen. If one day you datre your buddies with a “blind” test, you might just find Bleak House will probably fill your own house with plenty of laughter and surprise.

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