jeudi 7 mai 2015

Kamasi Washington - The Epic (2015)

This is called The Epic and indeed just "Epic" would have been an understatement for this album is the glorious embodiment of how epic a jazz album can be. On The Epic Kamasi Washington plays with his band, the excellent The next step (10 musicians, Kamasi on tenor Sax, two bassists, one standup and one electric, two drummers, a keyboard, a piano, trombone and a singer). there's also a 32 people string section orchestra and a 20 people choir. how about that? Uually I don't like orchestral music and I prefer small jazz bands but even if sometimes the orchestrations are a bit too much that's also part of the greatness of this album. That much too much borders genius! it walks a dangerous thin line but that's also why it's a fascinating album. it's not just awesome by the number, oh, did I mention it's a 3 CD album, 171 minutes of music? can you take it? guess what? you probably can, there's enough diversity and creativity on display that you can listen to the whole album without getting bored at any moment. It's an immersive experience. it swallows you. ok quantity but also very high quality, marvellous and surprising songwriting, the best musicianship you can find (special mention to the rhythm section, to the keys / piano and to Kamasi Washington with his sax).  It's jazz of course, it's also very groovy and funky (that drumming!), soulfull (the orchestration can reminds Isaac Hayes at times, or Stevie Wonder melodies).  You can find a Coltrane bit, a lot of Sun Ra i'd say as well, well, it's some crazy, trippy forward thinking jazz.

An awesome and very special jazz album (and maybe more than that!).

http://kamasiwashington.com/


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