Make a difference: Support jazz online

Support All About Jazz Your friends at All About Jazz are looking for readers to help back our website upgrade project. Of critical importance, this project will result in a vastly improved design across all devices and will make future All About Jazz projects much easier to implement. Click here to learn more about this project including donation rewards.

17

Martin Loyato: Involution

Geno Thackara By

Sign in to view read count
Have you ever wondered what directions Miles Davis might have taken if he hadn't retired from his electric fusion period in mid-1975? Perhaps he could have shifted his influences even farther east, traded the odd cocaine binge for an opium habit, and gradually replaced all the heavily layered African rhythms with some more minimalist drones out of the middle East. We can never know for sure how it would have sounded, but decades removed in time and technology, Involution takes up just that kind of challenge with relish.

Martin Loyato wouldn't resort to merely aping the Chief's stylings, of course, but instead takes that source as one guidepost among many others: Jon Hassell's cross-cultural "Fourth World" philosophy, classical minimalism, an avant-garde ear for textures and a jazzy feel for improvisational groove all make part of the melange. Featuring a cast of players spanning five continents, this is an hour of otherworldly trance where light electronics coexist with Indian hand percussion, fusion keyboards and Chinese chimes. Languid as it is, the lack of speed never means a lack of impact; instead it's an object lesson in the virtues of patience.

Saxophone and oud make equal ingredients with wispy flute and the wordless singing of an almost-angelic choir. Loyato wahs his way with a mute over slow horns in the club-noir title track, takes a sharp turn into late-night desert trance with reverent Arabic chanting in the next, then decides it's time for a lofty electric guitar solo before switching to some skittering electro-beats. This is the kind of stuff that the often-cheapened term "world music" shoots for but so rarely achieves: a unified whole that simply forgets the idea of boundaries altogether.

Track Listing: Saraswati; Kindred Spirits; Lullaby for the Moon; Be Aware of Love; Danza de las Animas; Involution; Perpetual Moonlight; Intuition; La Dos Caras de la Incertidumbre.

Personnel: Martín Loyato: quarter-tone trumpet, quarter-tone flugelhorn, valve trombone, Native American flutes, Bolivian Moseño flute, kigonki, piano & electronics; Jean Madani: electric bass; Hisham Hallak: vocals; Ghassan Sahhab: qanun; Ziyad Sahhab: oud; Lety ElNaggar: nay; Ramzi Ramman: electric & acoustic guitar; Mohammed Zahzah: electric guitar & electronics; Richard Vaudrey: cello; Petros Sakelliou: Fender Rhodes & synthesizer; Walid Baba Nasser: frames; Diego Chono Gonzalez: bass sax; Miguel Fernandez: tenor sax; Jose Jimenez: tuba; Ae-Jeong Lee: violin; Chang Hyun: violin; Lee Chang: viola; Yasmina Sabbah: choir director. Choir - Sopranos: Youmna Chamaa Bou Hadir, Lynn Jbeily, Rim Armouch, Farah Armouch, Najla Sadek, Rim Atie; Altos: Natalie Maalouf, Nada Baba, Karen Hamad, Sarah Abi Samra, Mira Hout, Sarah Jawhar, Mona Salemeh; Tenors: Majd Zeid Khiam, Mohammed Zahzah; Bass: Jawad El-Mawla.

Title: Involution | Year Released: 2017 | Record Label: Syncretism Records

Tags

Related Video

comments powered by Disqus

More Articles

Read Lucas CD/LP/Track Review Lucas
by Mike Jurkovic
Published: January 22, 2018
Read In Paris: The Definitive ORTF Recording CD/LP/Track Review In Paris: The Definitive ORTF Recording
by C. Michael Bailey
Published: January 22, 2018
Read D'Agala CD/LP/Track Review D'Agala
by Mark Corroto
Published: January 22, 2018
Read Not Bound CD/LP/Track Review Not Bound
by Don Phipps
Published: January 22, 2018
Read Not Nearly Enough To Buy A House CD/LP/Track Review Not Nearly Enough To Buy A House
by Mark Sullivan
Published: January 21, 2018
Read Journey to a New World CD/LP/Track Review Journey to a New World
by Troy Dostert
Published: January 21, 2018
Read "Live in Concert" CD/LP/Track Review Live in Concert
by David Becker
Published: January 30, 2017
Read "Live" CD/LP/Track Review Live
by Bruce Lindsay
Published: April 25, 2017
Read "Volume 5" CD/LP/Track Review Volume 5
by Jack Bowers
Published: November 14, 2017
Read "La Diversité" CD/LP/Track Review La Diversité
by Roger Farbey
Published: January 31, 2017
Read "Highsmith" CD/LP/Track Review Highsmith
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: July 7, 2017
Read "As It Should Be: Ballads 2" CD/LP/Track Review As It Should Be: Ballads 2
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: June 21, 2017