SOK "feat. Anders - Forsthoff - Gumpert - Sommer"
Germany, 1971-73 (AHO CD 1019)
Another obscurity (to me at least) from the vault of onxidlib! As he wrote “It's Jazz but with a decidedly Rock attitude” or is it Rock with a decidedly Jazz attitude? The 1971 tracks are in the vein of the best Horn Rock bands but with a level of musicianship way above your average Horn Rock Band (in that sense , SOK could be seen as a German equivalent to Chase, Dreams or BS&T, all horn rock bands that were composed of seasoned jazz musicians).
By1973 their horn rock had become more progressive / fusion oriented. The track Liebeslied sounds almost like Nucleus featuring a violin. There are a few tracks with vocals in German. It does not really work in that context. German language is OK for romantic lieders or Wagnerian operas but jazzrock is a no-go area … at least IMHO.
Here is some background:
SOK was founded in 1971 as a spin-off of the Klaus Lenz Big Band. In 1972 they were invited for the "Jazz in der Kammer" series. The same year they collaborated in a stage production of "Die neuen Leiden des jungen W.". at the German Theatre in East-Berlin.
(It was Ulrich Plenzdorf's play and not Goethe's famous novel. It adapted Goethe's novel to the then contemporary situation in the DDR. Later an adaption of the play as a novel [by Plenzdorf himself] became quite famous in the western part of Germany. A subsequent film adaption followed which was well received well in West-Germany ... as you can see the Boogieman and onxidlib cater for your brain as much as for your ears!).
At the end of 1973 Gumpert and Sommer quit playing in SOK, re-started as a duo and later formed Synopsis with Conny Bauer and Klaus Koch. They were replaced by Jochen Gleichmann (tp, flügelh, harp) and Rainer Riedel (dr). At times Ernst-Ludwig Petrowsky or Hans-Joachim Grasswurm were invited as guest-musicians.
The mid-seventies saw the disintegration of SOK.
All the music is by Gumpert except "Modifikation" which is from Hermann Anders and "Geh' Vorbei", co-written byAnders and Gerlach. "Du lebst in einer großen Stadt" and "Strandgut" are by Gumpert/Nieblich.
The trumpet player Robert Tornev most probably does not play on the last three pieces on the (now OOP) CD. He had left SOK for the Theo Schuhmann Combo.
Sources of info: onxidlib and "Melodie und Rhythmus" (issue 4/1972).
Hans-Joachim Grasswurm, trumpet (1-3)
Rainer Gäbler, alto saxophone, flute (1-3)
Konrad Körner, tenor saxophone (1-3)
Jochen Gleichmann, trumpet, harmonica, percussion (4-11)
Robert Tornev, trumpet, violin (4-11)
Helmut Forsthoff, tenor saxophone, flute (4-11)
Hermann Anders, trombone
Ulrich Gumpert, piano, organ, electric piano, vocals
Günter Dobrowolsky, guitar
Gert Lübke, bass-guitar
Günter Sommer, drums
Barbara Volz, vocal
01. Sok-Rock 4:57
02. Modifikation 3:14
03. Fenster Auf 5:13
04. Geh' Vorbei 2:48
05. Sok-Oriental 3:09
06. Du Lebst In Einer Großen Stadt 4:39
07. Impossible 6:38
08. Strandgut 7:44
09. Bruder John 4:53
10. Liebeslied 9:39
11. Der Grüne Vogel 6:09
Recorded at "Rundfunk der DDR" Studios, Berlin by Klaus Kühne;
Tr.1/2 > 24.02.1971; Tr.3 > 14.03.1971; Tr.4-6 > 26/27.05.1971;
Tr.7/8 > 06/07.12.1971; Tr.9 > 29.01.1973; Tr.10/11 > 03.09.1973.