316

Kahil El'Zabar's Ritual Trio: Ooh Live!

John Barron By

Sign in to view read count
Kahil El'Zabar's Ritual Trio: Ooh Live!
Ooh! is the artistic conception of veteran percussionist Kahil El'Zabar and an acronym for Operative Oracles for Humanity. To jumpstart his newly founded creative endeavor, the famed Chicago improviser has released Ooh! Live, a recording of his Ritual Trio from a 2000 concert at The Hot House in Chicago. El'Zabar's fellow oracles for this date were the late bassist Malachi Favors, legendary Chicago musician Ari Brown—perhaps best known as a saxophonist but featured here mainly on piano—and special guest Pharoah Sanders who lends his spirit for two of the disc's four tracks.

The trio of El'Zabar, Favors and Brown open the disc with a slow burn on "Autumn Leaves." The familiar melody and in-the-pocket groove set the tone for a set of high spirits and open-ended camaraderie.

The centerpiece of the disc, the free-form "In The Land of Ooh," garners an out-of-this-world performance from Sanders. The legendary reedman displays unrelenting intensity as he grinds, growls and wails through the twenty-five minute exploration.

Brown is front and center for a minor-key rendition of the traditional "This Little Light of Mine." The tune opens rubato with the commanding presence of Favors' arco lines before settling into a soulful medium-tempo groove. Brown's rhythmic spontaneity appears unlimited. He incorporates a conversational approach between both of his hands, creating layers of intensity. Favors and El'Zabar follow with matter-of-fact solo turns of their own, swinging and characteristically melodic.

Sanders returns for the disc closer, "Ka's Blues," a spirited chaser that gets the crowd shouting. El'Zabar's driving shuffle and Brown's R&B inspired voicings bring out some vibrant, at times greasy wailing from Sanders who even does some impromptu vocalizing. Brown gets up from the piano midway through to blow a soulful tenor solo before Sanders takes the set out with raw, guttural exuberance.

Track Listing

Autumn Leaves; In The Land of Ooh!; This Little Light of Mine; Ka's Blues.

Personnel

Kahil El'Zabar: drums, voice; Pharoah Sanders: tenor saxophone, voice; Malachi Favors: bass; Ari Brown: piano, tenor saxophone (4).

Album information

Title: Ooh Live! | Year Released: 2008 | Record Label: Bright Moments/Katalyst

Post a comment about this album

Tags

Shop Amazon

More

Read Sun Trance
Sun Trance
Markus Reuter
Read Lies
Lies
Clemens Kuratle Murmullo
Read Prism
Prism
Conference Call

All About Jazz needs your support

Donate
All About Jazz & Jazz Near You were built to promote jazz music: both recorded and live events. We rely primarily on venues, festivals and musicians to promote their events through our platform. With club closures, shelter in place and an uncertain future, we've pivoted our platform to collect, promote and broadcast livestream concerts to support our jazz musician friends. This is a significant but neccesary effort that will help musicians now, and in the future. You can help offset the cost of this essential undertaking by making a donation today. In return, we'll deliver an ad-free experience (which includes hiding the bottom right video ad). Thank you.

Get more of a good thing

Our weekly newsletter highlights our top stories and includes your local jazz events calendar.