Kate Westbrook Recordings
London Bridge Is Broken Down
Mike Westbrook
Kate Westbrook
A Composition for Voice, Jazz Orchestra & Chamber Orchestra
London Bridge is Broken Down CD cover
Kate and Mike Westbrook
Mike Westbrook Orchestra
Kate Westbrook (voice, tenor horn)
Mike Westbrook (piano)
Chris Biscoe (as, bs, ss, alto clarinet)
Peter Whyman (as, ss, cl)
Graham Russell (tp, flh, piccolo trumpet)
Paul Nieman (tb, electronics)
Brian Godding (guitar)
Steve Cook (bass guitar)
Tony Marsh (dr)
Le Sinfonietta de Picardie
(conducted by Alexandre Myrat)
Music composed and arranged by Mike Westbrook
Texts written and selected by Kate Westbrook
Texts by Rene Arcos, Wilhelm Busch, Andree Chedid, Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, Bernard Lassahn, Siegfried Sassoon, Kate Westbrook.
Musical settings of texts by Mike Westbrook and Kate Westbrook


London Bridge Is Broken Down was commisioned by 'Le Temps du Jazz' (Festival International de Jazz d'Amiens) and premiered at La Maison de la Culture, Amiens on 26 May 1987.
Recorded at Studio Pathe Marconi EMI, Paris, 7 - 10th December 1987
originally released on Virgin/Venture 1988.
Produced by Fiachra Trench
Executive Producer Declan Colgan
Reissued on B.G.O Records www.bgo-records.com BGOCD788
Digitally remastered with new liner notes by Alyn Shipton
Music published by Metisse Music, Paris. email: contact@metisse-music.com
Perhaps "Les Morts", with one of Kate's finest vocal performances, is its centre of focus but its ecstatic ending with the strange 12th century poem "Aucassin et Nicolette" and its humanistic and heretical theme is simply inspired. This record grows in stature by the year.
Duncan Heining - Jazzwise - August 2008
Westbrook is revealed as a master orchestrator, weaving together the bright and ambiguous threads of section-colour one found deployed so impressionistically in Metropolis and other earlier work... Key to this is Kate Westbrook whose dramatic delivery conveys immense musical subtlety. An essential contemporary work.
Brian Morton - Jazz Review - August 2008
From its first extraordinary, uniquely arresting orchestral shreiks and sighs, through its haunting meditations on loss, division and compassion, to its closing irreverent celebration of the power of human love London Bridge grips the listener like few other pieces.
Chris Parker - Vortex - Summer 2008
Westbrook's integration of his jazz nonet with the 22 piece Le Sinfonietta de Picardie, of improv with scored, and his range and control of orchestral colour are breathtaking. The music's sublime tumult....superbly played and very moving. And, in transcending both jazz and classical influences, it's beyond category.
Ray Comiskey - Irish Times - July 11, 2008
The Westbrooks' massive masterwork...
a towering achievement.
Ronald Atkins - The Guardian - September 1988
... a dense, haunting contemplation of irony, ambiguity, courage and love...
Chris Parker - Wire Magazine - October 1988
Kate Westbrook's reading of Rene Arcos's "Les Morts" its tragic lines hissed and spat against chilling martial beats, brilliantly casts her as the mother of all men ever slaughtered on the battlefield, from the Trojan plain to the Fao peninsula.
Richard Williams - The Times - August 1988
With this immensely powerful work, Westbrook restates his claim to international pre-eminence among the heirs of Duke Ellington and Charles Mingus.
Richard Williams - The Times - August 1988
Further, complete reviews
are featured here
DISC 1
1. London Bridge
2. Wenceslas Square

Berlin Wall
3. Nähe des Geliebten
4. B.V.B.W (Belle-Vue Berlin Wall)
    Traurig, aber falsch

DISC 2
Berlin Wall (cont.)
1. Ein Vogel

Vienna
2. Viennese Waltz
3. Für Sie

Picardie
4. Blighters
5. Les morts
6. Picardie Three
7. Picardie Four
8. Une fenêtre
9. Picardie Six
10. Aucassin et Nicolette
Track Listing
Sound Samples
Personnel
Information
Press Quotes








Kate Westbrook