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1 step 7 seas

Steven Kamperman wrote the suite Mephisto in collaboration with paintress Marijke Nielen and several text writers. The composition functions as an independent work as well. Mephisto features a mix of solos and group-improvisations; jazz, chamber music, quasi folk music and free improvisation blending together. Imagine being at an Ellington concert, all of a sudden to be dragged away to subterranean funk, to finally find peace with a solemn ballad. The warm combination of two trombones with two low clarinets provides the group with a surprising sound.

The live performance of the suite Mephisto at the prestigious SJU Jazz Festival (Utrecht, april 2000, recorded by national broadcast company VPRO) proved a huge success. The guest-appearance of french master violin player Dominique Pifarély added an extra dimension to this concert. The group also performs at the North Sea Jazz festival 2000.

Press reviews

...reed-player and composer Steven Kamperman has been juggling in this suite, in which all kinds of styles and forms are used. Kamperman quite impressively manages to combine all these different perspectives, from pure jazz to abstract chamber music, into something that absolutely shows vision. The music always sounds fresh and clear. The setting (double bass, drums, two trombones and two reed-players, Kamperman himself doubling on alto saxophone and alto clarinet) is just right for this music that is as ambitious as it is agreeable (Jacob Haagsma, De Leeuwarder Courant, 12-5-2000)

...served au naturel Kamperman's music stands up perfectly as well. The saxophonist/clarinettist/composer has refined the classical sounding music that already could be heard on his first CD into a recognizable personal style, that at some moments shows parallels with the big band work of Charles Mingus. An added trombone and bass clarinet/soprano saxophone provide the band with a beautiful big sound, which makes the ingenious turns stand out all the more and renders the slow parts more solemn. And though the visual aspect in this music is strong, the band does not forget to stretch out in some really swinging parts (Edo Dijksterhuis, NRC, 30-5-2000)

Steven Kamperman, artistic director of the septet [1 Step 7 Seas + Dominique Pifarély] brought two trombone players to the stage, who showed a broad spectre of emotions. Kees Adolfsen en Fernand de Willigen played sceptic 'wah-wahs' that sounded like 'sure... have someone else on!', a venomous ‘bwép!-bwép!’ - 'get off!', and now and then an exulting ‘trrrwwwaaap-trrrwwwaaap!’ Hence the trombones - with mute, plunger or open - became more than musical instruments: fine replacements of the human voice in poetry without words. The group was particularly in great form while playing a magical, driven blues, with Fernand de Willigen given a sermon for the parish. It turned out to be a long and intense concert (Jeroen de Valk, UN, 9-4-2000)


Steven Kamperman: alto saxophone & alto clarinet

Tjitze Vogel: double bass & E-flat tuba

Kees Adolfsen: trombone

Chris Barchet: drums

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