|Brown, Anthony / Rhapsodies|
|Add Date:||2006-04-02|| ||Pull Date:||2006-06-04|| ||Charts:||Jazz|
|Week Ending:||4 Jun||14 May||30 Apr||16 Apr||9 Apr|
ANTHONY BROWN’S ORCHESTRA – “Rhapsodies” |
Water Baby, 2006
Bay Area modern-jazz big band with a strong global flavor. The orchestra incorporates traditional Chinese & Japanese instruments (sheng, shakuhachi, erhu, etc.) plus Asian and African percussion for a uniquely cosmopolitan sound. The centerpiece of this disc is a nifty new 19-minute multicultural reworking of Gershwin’s Rhapsody in Blue (tracks 4-9). This should be played together, but you might get away with breaking it up. David Murray guests on 2 & 12.
Fo’s Picks: the suite & 12 (also 2 & 11 for out-jazz fans)
1. 1:18 – lovely short fugue on a Chinese-style melody, nice sax
2. 6:21 – funky Lester Bowie tribute based on “Shortnin’ Bread,” drifts into wild group improv, fades out to abstract tones, then stomps back for sax solo
3. 3:17 – sweet, shadowy Mingus ballad, played straight, rich tones
4. 5:16 – bird sounds, then the familiar melody bounces around the orchestra: marches proudly, but also has some grooving or mellow moments
5. 3:07 – starts as smooth rhumba, then back to theme in a strutting statement
6. 1:21 – wintry shakuhachi break, somewhat bleak, chilling atmosphere
7. 2:27 – bluesy restatement of theme w/ relaxed electric guitar, swampy horns
8. 3:48 – gentle and nostalgic, guitar & steel drum give it a sort of tropical feel
9. 2:59 – taiko drums imitate a train; then the big, crashing finale
10. 0:42 – “Take Me Out to the Ballgame”: solo sheng (Chinese mouth organ)
11. 8:05 – late Ellington piece (from Afro-Eurasian Eclipse): abstract for 2 minutes, then loose funky/rockin’ beats & riffs + two sax solos
12. 5:28 – Ellington gospel classic, lead voice is a duet between erhu (Chinese violin) and bass clarinet. Earthy, sprited, awesome!
13. 9:17 – blends parts of two of Brown’s extended works: starts airy & folksy, rolls with that melody, morphs into an afro-latin groove, then returns.
14. 1:09 – theme to NPR’s “Pacific Time”: happy percussion & wind layers
[Fo] - 3/27/06