Nobody plays Monk like Schlippenbach. In the same way Monk worked on a composition for weeks, Schlippenbach has involved himself with Monk's work for many years. Listening, analysing, playing and with the greatest conceivable respect. Already the 3 CD-recordings of Thelonious Monk's complete works from Alexander von Schlippenbach together with the band Die Enttäuschung (Intakt CD 100) are a most impressive documentation of this involvement.
With this present production for which Alexander von Schlippenbach chose some of his "Monk-favourites" – including some of the more rarely performed pieces – to him it was not about working on, re-harmonising or consciously changing the original forms of Monk's compositions. Their themes are so multifaceted and complex that it was Alexander von Schlippenbach's first and foremost concern to keep very close to these themes and to concentrate his focus on dealing "freely" with the melodies and the rhythmic torque.
Monk and Schlippenbach: A stimulated conversation going on and they get along brilliantly, these brothers in spirit!