148

Michael Wolff: Impure Thoughts

By

Sign in to view read count
What say you? You have come before us with impure thoughts of what a jamband should be! You know better than that. Close your eyes and open your mind for many bands that truly jam were doing so decades before the term was coined. Michael Wolff has closed his and the result is heard in the pure deep groove of Impure Thoughts.

Many know pianist/ composer Michael Wolff from his long, respected tenure as pianist for jazz legends such asCannonball Adderly,Sonny RollinsandCal Tjader. Others were introduced to him in his five years as bandleader on theArsenio Hall show. And then there were the four critically acclaimed straight ahead jazz solo recordings that brought him notoriety and, all of which, held top five positions in the U.S. jazz charts. And further still, many were introduced to Wolff this summer as he composed the soundtrack for the award-winning feature motion pictureThe Tic Code, based on his real life story and written by and starring his wife, actressPolly Draper(from the TV series “thirtysomething”). The Tic Code, which also stars Gregory Hines, tells the story of a young piano prodigy with Tourette’s syndrome. So, with all these credits and musical ambitions, there was only one road to travel, the one less traveled.

Impure Thoughts features Wolff on acoustic piano but also brims with a dense cascading backdrop of African and Indian Beats and a percussive wall of syncopation produced by bass, reeds, shakers, drums and tablas. In assembling the band for this new musical jam, Wolff corralled some “heavies” including tabla player, Badal Roy, who made the original marriage between jazz and Indian music complete when he recorded onMiles Davis’ On the Corner . And with Roy in the mix, Michael pays homage to Miles, the fusion patriarch, with a propulsive version of In A Silent Way .

In the simplest terms, Impure Thoughts comes across as a collective of musicians stretching out and having a blast. From the exotic Indian tones on “Eritrea” and “Euphoria” to the African infused swagger of “Bengal”, you’ll feel like you’re on a mysterious jungle safari. And if spice is what you crave, “Mama Tell Me” incorporates a festive Latin / Cuban groove over which Wolff gets busy, but not too much so, as he slips back into the pocket and lets the band discover a new plane to graze upon. From there, the blood in your appendages keeps on flowing, as the band pulses and throbs through renditions of funk classics“Papa Was a Rolling Stone”and “Thank you For Lettin’ me be Mice Elf”. So, stop crowding your thoughts with impure notions and take a refreshing ride that reaches beyond and brings distinct worlds of music one step closer to fusionary perfection.

Track Listing: Eritrea; Papa Was A Rolling Stone; Euphoria; Bengal; Thank You; In A Silent Way; Impure Thoughts; Mama Tell Me

Personnel: Alex Foster: reeds; John B. Williams: bass; Michael Wolff: piano; Frank Colon: percussion; Badal Roy: tablas; Victor Jones: drums.

| Record Label: Indianola Music | Style: Fringes of Jazz


Shop

More Articles

Read Petite Afrique CD/LP/Track Review Petite Afrique
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: April 29, 2017
Read Organ Monk, The Breathe Suite CD/LP/Track Review Organ Monk, The Breathe Suite
by Roger Farbey
Published: April 29, 2017
Read The Wild CD/LP/Track Review The Wild
by Mark Sullivan
Published: April 29, 2017
Read Soul Garden CD/LP/Track Review Soul Garden
by C. Michael Bailey
Published: April 29, 2017
Read The Authorized Bang Collection CD/LP/Track Review The Authorized Bang Collection
by Doug Collette
Published: April 29, 2017
Read Cross My Palm With Silver CD/LP/Track Review Cross My Palm With Silver
by Karl Ackermann
Published: April 28, 2017
Read "Rub Out The Word" CD/LP/Track Review Rub Out The Word
by Mark Sullivan
Published: August 20, 2016
Read "Honey For The Biscuit" CD/LP/Track Review Honey For The Biscuit
by James Nadal
Published: August 13, 2016
Read "windS" CD/LP/Track Review windS
by Mark Sullivan
Published: May 31, 2016
Read "Wake Up Call" CD/LP/Track Review Wake Up Call
by Glenn Astarita
Published: April 24, 2017
Read "Out On The Coast" CD/LP/Track Review Out On The Coast
by Joe Gatto
Published: January 17, 2017
Read "Marianne" CD/LP/Track Review Marianne
by Mark Corroto
Published: June 28, 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!