Three Nails Left

Alexander von Schlippenbach Quartet

Three Nails Left


One of the all-time great records of improvised music from Europe. Period. Blisteringly hot. Uncompromisingly inventive. Staggeringly beautiful. And insanely rare. Originally issued in the mid '70s on FMP, at its core Three Nails Left features the legendary Schlippenbach Trio – British saxophonist Evan Parker, and German percussionist Paul Lovens joining the German pianist – the triangle squared by the addition of German bassist Peter Kowald. Just the first track, an incredible 20-plus minute burner called "Range," is worth the price of admission – as punk rock as free music gets, it shows Parker's spectacular capabilities at high-octane blowing. Kowald adds a chewy, molasses bottom to the group, offsetting Lovens' flinty metal, stick and skin and Schlippenbach's hyper-focused intensity. This flammable configuration performed and recorded together as a regular unit in the period, making another FMP LP, The Hidden Peak, and a recording later released on CD by Atavistic's Unheard Music Series. One side was reissued on a limited edition FMP box set, together with part of The Hidden Peak, but it's never been available intact on CD. Remastered from original tapes, packaged with the original cover design by Lovens, Three Nails Left is a stone cold classic of creative music.

Track Times
1. Range (Schlippenback/Kowald1/23:44)
2. Black Holes (Parker/11:57)
3. Three Nails Left; For P.L. (Lovens/4:11)

Evan Parker, soprano & tenor saxophone
Alexander Von Schlippenbach, piano
Peter Kowald, bass
Paul Lovens, percussion

Track 1 recorded live by Michael Krause on June 2, 1974, at the Third New Jazz Festival Moers. Tracks 2–3 recorded live by Jost Gebers on February 2, 1975, at the Quartier Latin, Berlin. Originally issued on FMP (FMP 210, 1975). Cover photograph by Nick Leidner and friends. Cover design by Paul Lovens. CD design by David Khan-Giordano. CD mastered by Olaf Rupp. Produced by Jost Gebers. Released on CD under license from FMP.