Healing Force / Songs Of Albert Ayler, The
Album: Songs Of Albert Ayler, The   Collection:Jazz
Artist:Healing Force   Added:Oct 2007
Label:Cuneiform Records  

A-File Activity
Add Date: 2007-12-09 Pull Date: 2008-02-10 Charts: Jazz
Week Ending: Feb 10 Jan 20 Jan 13 Jan 6 Dec 16
Airplays: 1 1 1 2 1

Recent Airplay
1. Feb 13, 2008: nag champa orangeasm
Heart Love
4. Jan 11, 2008: The Fifth Hour
Music Is The Healing Force Of The Universe
2. Feb 08, 2008: Memory Select
New Generation
5. Jan 04, 2008: Memory Select
New Generation
3. Jan 18, 2008: Memory Select
Heart Love
6. Jan 04, 2008: No Cover, No Minimum: Extended Wanderings
Thank God For Women

Album Review
Craig Matsumoto
Reviewed 2007-12-01
Punk aggression, pop silliness, Zappa-esque guitar noodling, and hardy free jazz, adding up to a tribute to Albert Ayler's later compositions.

All-star cast includes Henry Kaiser and Joe Morris, plus local improv folks like Weasel Walter. There's a wide mix of styles from track to track, or even within tracks, making the album an intersting exploration. Vocals from Aurora Josephson were hard to take for some -- she plays it straight, mostly, but sometimes sounds off key? (5) or sings too low in her range (2,9). Kaiser and ex-Zappaite Mike Keneally give things a rock edge at times, while Damon Smith (bass) and Vinny Golia (reeds) bring us back into the jazz realm.

Despite the variety, the session doesn't feel scattershot -- there's an undercurrent of respectful out-jazz playing that binds it all together. The 20-minute second track sticks to a reverent jazz feel that lets you know they take Ayler seriously, even though they're having fun with his music.

1- Cool sax solo. Odd spoken interlude -- by the ENTIRE BAND -- a kind of prayer for Ayler's music. It's a bit goofy.

2- Soaring, sweeping, a very '60s feel. Low vocal in reverent tones. Some good sax flights. Lots of Kenneally's zappa-like guitar in the second half.

3- Plodding "Japanese" melody that's trite and even a bit insulting. Gets into a slashing, vicious, out-of-control sax solo while the Japanese calmness continues in the background. This one'll confuse a lot of people. Second half gets into crunchy guitar chaos, then an Ayler marching-band theme done in abrasive honks.

4- Slow and near-religious chant, then squealy guitar noodling

5- Aggressive stepping beat; vocals; showoffy Zappa-ish guitar solo (Keneally) .. . Last half gets into some cool wandering over a steady hard beat

6- Squeaky, cranky sax. Suddenly, lounge piano and cutesy vocals. Charmingly goofy.

7- Chunky "Heart/Love" chant and a poetic quiet vocal. Gives way to cool bebop flute and, later, crazy jazz guitar.

8- Fast, jumbly, confusing intro -- snaps into a stoic mid/fast beat, almost a no wave feel, with vocals in an ironic lackluster tone. PAUSE after 5:20, then a squiggly version with a helium vocal that gets into really high keening that some will find annoying.

9- Kaiser guitar noodling, sultry little vocal, crazy sax solo

Track Listing
1. New New Grass / Message From Albert   5. Oh! Love Of Life
2. Music Is The Healing Force Of The Universe   6. Thank God For Women
3. Japan / Universal Indians   7. Heart Love
4. A Man Is Like A Tree   8. Nw Generation
  9. New Ghosts / New Message