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Many Have No Speech

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Many Have No Speech
Many Have No Speech


Reissue of Michael Mantler's 1988 WATT/ECM album featuring Jack Bruce, Marianne Faithfull and Robert Wyatt on vocals. The Austro-American trumpeter Michael Mantler has been concerned with the reciprocal relationships between music and literary texts for years. He's set texts by Samuel Beckett (No Answer), Edward Goerey (The Hapless Child) and Harold Pinter (Silence) to music. In all of those recordings, Mantler used more traditional, smaller ensembles.

On 'Many Have No Speech', he uses an orchestra for the first time. Here he set texts by Samuel Beckett, Philippe Soupault, and Ernst Meister to music. The work on this production took a year and a half: the recordings took place in London, New York, Boston and Copenhagen. This was due in no small part to Mantler's choice of singers; in addition to Jack Bruce and Robert Wyatt (with whom Mantler had worked on previous albums), Many Have No Speech also features Marianne Faithfull - another of those "broken voices" that Mantler holds in such high regard.

Rarely does the translation from text to music succeed in what Michael Mantler accomplishes on this production: he finds a perfect unity of text and music, treating them as equals, not as one medium in the service of the other. In the music, the improvisational elements are reduced to a minimum in order to preserve the greatest possible coherence. The music reflects the tenor of the texts: extreme concentration and precision in the (musical) language, a brittleness that goes as far as abstraction, leaving enough room for the listener's own interpretation.

Jack Bruce: voice
Marianne Faithfull: voice
Robert Wyatt: voice
Michael Mantler: trumpet
Rick Fenn: guitar
The Danish Concert Radio Orchestra
Peder Kragerup: conductor


  1. Name
  2. Intro
  3. Just As Someone
  4. Ce Qu'a De Pis
  5. Alles Scheint Rand
  6. Imagine
  7. In The End
  8. Vieil Aller
  9. Rien Nul
  10. Tant De Temps
  11. En Face
  12. Chaque Jour
  13. Pss
  14. En Cadence
  15. Something There
  16. Comrade
  17. Den Atem Ausget Ausget
  18. A L'abattoir
  19. And What
  20. D'ou La Voix
  21. Fous Qui Disiez
  22. Merk, Jetzt
  23. Son Ombre
  24. Reve
  25. Life Connects
  26. Prisonniers
  27. Silence
  28. Viele Haben Keine Sprache

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