Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Basra

Drummer, Pete LaRoca's one and only session as a leader for Blue Note resulted in one of the label's finest and most consistent releases. Basra is aural pleasure from start to finish with evocative rhythms, beautiful textures, and stunning performances by Joe Henderson, Steve Swallow, and Steve Kuhn. The album starts off with the latin flavor of "Malaguena." The piece is exotic, yet grave, and Henderson's moan and bark lead the band into a sort of controlled chaos. "Candu" is an upbeat funky number. "Tears from Heaven" melds modal Jazz with the stranger post-bopisms that were coming into fashion at the time. The title track is an absolutely gorgeous landscape of sound, sultry, sexy, and altogether mysterious. The aptly titled "Lazy Afternoon" is a perfect companion to just that, a relaxing, somewhat pensive day. The album closes with the swing of "Elderdown," reminding us that for all it's wonderful twists and moods, Basra is a Jazz record after all. If you aren't a huge fan of Jazz, and only really want one or two solid albums in your collection, then I recommend one of them be this gem.



6 comments:

benperry.net said...

hells yeah -- fools gettin' schooled up in this piece

thishopefulabsurdity said...

hell YES. love the jazz posts. i've been eating up everything gracham moncur iii touched thanks to you. keep posting these rad blue note sessions.

also, the inclusion of joe henderson alone makes me whimper with pleasure.

zhollows said...

Fantastic record!

Mr. Jang said...

Aesop, this album is absolutely sublime. Thank you for sharing, this shit is brilliant.

Chris said...

Thanks for this one! Really enjoyed it...

Will Evans said...

In light of Pete LaRoca's recent death, I just wanted to say THANK YOU for introducing me to this record, I listen to it at least once a week now, and is definitely one of my top jazz albums. I think a lot of fans of metal would enjoy the exotic melodies and complex rhythms at work here. Thank you again for all you've done and all you do.