186

Band Of Gypsys Reincarnation: 40 Years After

Mark F. Turner By

Sign in to view read count
The influence of Jimi Hendrix reaches far and wide even after his untimely death at 27 years of age on September 18, 1970. Over the years, there have been countless dedications to the iconic guitarist including a few notable jazz-oriented releases like Purple: Celebrating Jimi Hendrix(ACT, 2007), from the intrepid French Vietnamese guitarist Nguyen Le.

The heralded coverage of Hendrix's 40th anniversary in 2010 unveiled Sony's West Coast Seattle Boy anthology and released material in Valleys of Neptune (Legacy Recordings). Yet another gem was quietly released by a peculiar but talented Hungarian ensemble—Band Of Gypsys Reincarnation, featuring trumpeter Randy Brecker, with the heartfelt 40 Years After.

Led by guitarist László Halper, the group successfully reinterprets a few of Hendrix's classics while capturing his mystic and offering something fresh. Halper's playing is first and foremost the key—unlocking psychedelic riffs and amber toned runs with a perfect blend of abandon and control. But it's also the band's anchoring—tight musicianship, touches of electronic effects, and the boldness to reinvent these beloved tunes, that sets the release apart from other dedications.

The set burns but embodies a cool melodism; by the time "If Six Was Nine"s classic riff digs in, Brecker's veteran trumpet rides over a tripled swing time, with added magic from Miklós Lukács' cimbalom (a hammered dulcimer) and Halper's inventive tweaking. The unparalleled "Purple Haze" has never sounded as mellow, as the band slows the tempo but keeps the essence intact; Halper transitioning from clean to warm distortion, sprinkling varied effects with aplomb. Hendrix's unforgettable "Hey Joe" takes a unique stance, with a mellifluous introduction, before turning up the amps. "Who Knows" is still a stone cold groove, and here it dons more of an old school R&B vibe, even quoting some lines from Miles Davis.

Chopin's "Prelude In E Minor" seems out of place until the same chords are shared in the opening of "Medley: Little Wing / 3rd Stone From The Sun (Pt 1)." It is this thoughtfulness and empathy that makes 40 Years After a fitting and outstanding tribute to one of music's all time greats.

Tags

comments powered by Disqus

More Articles

Read Estonian Suite: Live In Tallinn CD/LP/Track Review Estonian Suite: Live In Tallinn
by Bruce Lindsay
Published: November 18, 2017
Read The Princess CD/LP/Track Review The Princess
by Mark Corroto
Published: November 18, 2017
Read Queen City Blues CD/LP/Track Review Queen City Blues
by Mike Jurkovic
Published: November 18, 2017
Read Latin Lover CD/LP/Track Review Latin Lover
by Rob Rosenblum
Published: November 18, 2017
Read Reclamation CD/LP/Track Review Reclamation
by Glenn Astarita
Published: November 18, 2017
Read Provenance CD/LP/Track Review Provenance
by Karl Ackermann
Published: November 17, 2017
Read "Nightfall" CD/LP/Track Review Nightfall
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: October 6, 2017
Read "Rebel Portraiture" CD/LP/Track Review Rebel Portraiture
by Karl Ackermann
Published: August 12, 2017
Read "My Foolish Heart" CD/LP/Track Review My Foolish Heart
by Geno Thackara
Published: February 3, 2017
Read "Elegy" CD/LP/Track Review Elegy
by John Kelman
Published: January 20, 2017
Read "Red Nation "1"" CD/LP/Track Review Red Nation "1"
by Mark Corroto
Published: January 20, 2017
Read "Gallarais" CD/LP/Track Review Gallarais
by Karl Ackermann
Published: November 15, 2017

Join the staff. Writers Wanted!

Develop a column, write album reviews, cover live shows, or conduct interviews.

Please support out sponsor