178

Elton Dean's Ninesense: Happy Daze + Oh! For The Edge

Mark Redlefsen By

Sign in to view read count
Elton Dean's Ninesense: Happy Daze + Oh! For The Edge This reissue of two Ninesense recordings, from the late British saxophonist Elton Dean, creates a gateway back to the London jazz scene of the 1970s. Digging into bands that he played with previously outside of his work with Soft Machine, he formed the nine-piece Ninesense with Keith Tippett, along with several other members of that pianist's bands, as well as other players that passed through the ranks of late South African pianist Chris McGregor's band, Brotherhood of Breath, like drummer Louis Moholo-Moholo. Despite being accompanied by an astounding assembly of front-line horn players, Dean never gets lost in the mix as his distinct alto and saxello playing shines right through.

The single-disc reissue combines two albums. Happy Daze (Ogun, 1978), the studio album, transmits a robust power that relaxes at just the right moments. The standout, "Seven for Lee," is a hypnotic and exotic masterpiece with bright phrases and solos blown over a South African-flavored rhythm. There is an overall sense of drama on the studio tracks that contrasts nicely with the looser, more playful vibe on the live tracks recorded on Oh! For The Edge (Ogun, 1976), like "Friday Night Blues."

Dean exploits the full power of his playing, composing and arranging skills in these memorable compositions. His individual style of moving from tonal to atonal in a mere verse is realized on a larger scale. The mood is joyful, as free and traditional currents swish back and forth smoothly to form one larger sound. There appears to be a warm familiarity and trust amongst the members that can be felt inside the music.

Despite the frenetic bursts of energy that each player fires off in solos, the tunes melodically resolve in a more cohesive fashion than typically heard in music from Tippett and McGregor's groups. This amazing band only lasted about three short years, making this welcome reissue an enjoyable reminder of the range of talents possessed by this sorely missed legend.


Track Listing: Nicrotto; Seven For Lee; Sweet F.A.; Three For All; Dance; Fall In Free; Forsoothe; M.T.; Friday Night Blues; Prayer For Jesus.

Personnel: Elton Dean: alto sax, saxello; Alan Skidmore: tenor sax; Harry Beckett: trumpet, flugelhorn; Mark Charig: trumpet, tenor horn; Nick Evans: trombone; Radu Malfatti: trombone (1-4); Keith Tippett: piano; Harry Miller: double bass; Louis Moholo: drums.

Year Released: 2009 | Record Label: Ogun Records | Style: Modern Jazz


Shop

More Articles

Read The Picasso Zone CD/LP/Track Review The Picasso Zone
by Franz A. Matzner
Published: February 23, 2017
Read The MUH Trio – Prague After Dark CD/LP/Track Review The MUH Trio – Prague After Dark
by C. Michael Bailey
Published: February 23, 2017
Read Les Deux Versants Se Regardent CD/LP/Track Review Les Deux Versants Se Regardent
by John Sharpe
Published: February 23, 2017
Read Molto Bene CD/LP/Track Review Molto Bene
by Mark Corroto
Published: February 23, 2017
Read Fellowship CD/LP/Track Review Fellowship
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: February 22, 2017
Read E.S.T. Symphony CD/LP/Track Review E.S.T. Symphony
by Karl Ackermann
Published: February 22, 2017
Read "WANDERlust" CD/LP/Track Review WANDERlust
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: August 19, 2016
Read "Rising Colossus" CD/LP/Track Review Rising Colossus
by Glenn Astarita
Published: December 28, 2016
Read "Planet" CD/LP/Track Review Planet
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: September 28, 2016
Read "Long After Midnight" CD/LP/Track Review Long After Midnight
by Edward Blanco
Published: June 21, 2016
Read "Vanheusenism: A Tribute to Jimmy Van Heusen" CD/LP/Track Review Vanheusenism: A Tribute to Jimmy Van Heusen
by Mark Sullivan
Published: September 2, 2016
Read "Tropical Infinito" CD/LP/Track Review Tropical Infinito
by Edward Blanco
Published: May 8, 2016

Post a comment

comments powered by Disqus

Sponsor: ECM Records | BUY NOW  

Support our sponsor

Support All About Jazz's Future

We need your help and we have a deal. Contribute $20 and we'll hide the six Google ads that appear on every page for a full year!

Buy it!