Kopfkino (Mons)

Ed Partyka Jazz Orchestra feat. Julia Oschewsky

Released November 2017

DownBeat Four-and-a-Half-Star Review






The Ed Partyka Jazz Orchestra (EPJO) was launched in Berlin in 2007. Its trademark is an unmistakable, and in all likelihood globally unique, mix of musical personalities. “Old stars” from the European big band establishment play side by side with newcomers from the young and hip jazz scenes of Berlin, Amsterdam, Vienna and Prague. Musicians from the USA, Germany, Austria, Holland, Switzerland and the Czech Republic get together – each of them brings their own musical language, and adds their unique national sound into the mix.

As on their previous CD Hits! Vol.1 (MONS Records), the singer and composer Julia Oschewsky plays a prominent role on the current album Kopfkino. “Her voice adds a clarity and intensity that had been lacking in the sound of the orchestra so far” enthused Ed Partyka, “and it definitely colours my arrangements in a very special way.”

“Kopfkino” – it means fantasies, and the sequences of events and occurrences that play out in your own imagination.
Ed Partyka purposely chose this title for the new album by the Ed Partyka Jazz Orchestra, and he uses the concept as a synonym for his composition (The Summer Of My Discontent (Summer In My Disco Tent)) and arrangements.
Composers such as Wayne Shorter (Fee Fi Fo Fum), Harold Arlen (Out Of This World), Ola Onabule (It’s The Peace That Deafens), Julia Oschewsky (One Two Three Ten) and Joris Roelofs (Ataraxia) all have their say; Ed Partyka puts his stamp on their work with his unmistakeable arrangements and inimitable musical ingenuity. “This music invites you to (day) dream. The dense texture of the orchestration, the melodically improvised solos, and the bright-sounding voice of Julia Oschewsky fire up the imagination. A feeling of sad beauty infuses the music and the whole power of the orchestra is revealed in my dramatic arrangements” said the artist. According to Ed Partyka, every big band has its own language. Judging Kopfkino on those terms, the composer and arranger has once again managed to create an unforgettably eloquent work in a refined and polished language!

Track Listing:

1. The Summer of My Discontent (Summer in My Disco Tent) (Ed Partyka) 09:56

2. Out of This World (Harold Arlen) 11:51

3. Fee Fi Fo Fum (Wayne Shorter) 08:55

4. It’s the Peace That Deafens (Ola Onabulé) 07:16

5. One Two Three Ten (Julia Oschewsky) 09:47

6. Ataraxia (Joris Roelofs) 10:26


Florian Trübsbach: alto saxophone, flute, alto flute, clarinet:

Oliver Leicht: alto saxophone, soprano saxophone, flute, clarinet, alto clarinet

Florian Leuschner: baritone saxophone, bass clarinet

Katharina Thomsen: baritone saxophone, bass saxophone, bass clarinet, contrabass clarinet

Paul Imm: bass

Robert Hedemann: bass trombone

Jan Schreiner: bass trombone, tuba

Ed Partyka: conductor

Reinhold Schmölzer: drums

Kirsty Wilson: english horn (5, 6)

Linus Bernoulli: french horn

Hendrik Soll: piano

Malte Schiller: tenor saxophone, soprano saxophone, flute, clarinet, bass clarinet

Lukas Wyss: trombone 

Simon Harrer: trombone 

Benny Brown: trumpet, flugelhorn 

Felix Meyer: trumpet, flugelhorn (3)

Gerhard Ornig: trumpet, flugelhorn 

Jörg Engels: trumpet, flugelhorn 

Martin Auer: trumpet, flugelhorn (5)

Julia Oschewsky: vocals

Recorded March 1 – 4, 2016, at Bauer Studios Ludwigsburg, Germany

Producer: Ed Partyka

Recording Engineer and Mixing: Andy Neresheimer

Editing Engineer: Philipp Heck

Recording Supervisor: Claudia Döffinger

Mastered by Ingo Krauss

Photography By – Lena Semmelroggen

Artwork: Zippo Zimmermann


Calling a big band a “jazz orchestra” can sometimes seem pretentious, but not in the case of Ed Partyka’s Berlin-based ensemble. His arrangements go well beyond the standard big band palette, exploiting timbre and dynamics to create the most vivid, coloristic sound possible. Note, for example, the gorgeous pastels he gets at the beginning of “It’s The Peace That Deafens,” deftly layering horn, clarinets, piano and tuba under a lilting flugelhorn melody. Or cue up his eerily despairing treatment of Harold Arlen’s “Out Of This World” and marvel at how, after breaking the song down to just an expressionist trio of piano, voice and Malte Schiller’s soprano saxophone, Partyka builds an almost Prokofievian sense of foreboding out of saxophones, flute, muted brass and percussion. Julia Oschewsky’s creamy mezzo-soprano remains utterly relaxed even when placed against a screaming trumpet section. And the intricate backings Partyka places behind Paul Imm’s bass solo on “Fee Fi Fo Fum” succeed thanks to the band’s masterful command of dynamics. Add in the brassy, blustering swing of “The Summer Of My Discontent (Summer In My Disco Tent),” and Kopfkino stands as a thrilling slice of state-of-the-art big band jazz.

J.D. Considine (DownBeat)