All About Jazz

Home » Articles » CD/LP/Track Review

Dear All About Jazz Readers,

If you're familiar with All About Jazz, you know that we've dedicated over two decades to supporting jazz as an art form, and more importantly, the creative musicians who make it. Our enduring commitment has made All About Jazz one of the most culturally important websites of its kind in the world reaching hundreds of thousands of readers every month. However, to expand our offerings and develop new means to foster jazz discovery we need your help.

You can become a sustaining member for a modest $20 and in return, we'll immediately hide those pesky Google ads PLUS deliver exclusive content and provide access to future articles for a full year! This combination will not only improve your AAJ experience, it will allow us to continue to rigorously build on the great work we first started in 1995. Read on to view our project ideas...

5

Big Mean Sound Machine: Runnin' for the Ghost

Chris M. Slawecki By

Sign in to view read count
On Runnin' for the Ghost, Big Mean Sound Machine sounds intent on obliterating every imaginable musical border: the lines between regional or geographic styles, the divide between acoustic and electronic instruments, the boundary between live and sampled music, the gap between ancient and contemporary music...just about any and every musical "box" you can think of.

The fourth full-length chapter in the musical story of this ten-piece afrobeat band led by bassist Angelo Peters was inspired by performing with master afrobeat drummer Tony Allen; their liner notes reveal that, "This album is dedicated to the sharing of music and education."

Runnin' for the Ghost continually grows in density, color and dynamics, and feels like you've jammed your ears into the high-speed spin cycle of an afrobeat washing machine. "Seeing the Bigger Picture" synthesizes afrobeat guitar and melody with Afro-Cuban percussion patterns, convening near the Caribbean through Peters' hard-rocking bass line (as if meeting in their geographic middle), with a synthesizer solo wriggling through like a line scribbled in fluorescent color.

"Van Chatter," which blends Central African Soukous with West African Highlife, kicks off from Andrew Klein's drumrolls and just keeps right on rolling. Klein and other percussionists keep this pot boiling hot while guitarist Dan Barker spreads electric juju on top like sticky glittery jam, melting with the horns and the rhythm section into that curious musical place where rhythm and melody meet. As its title suggests, "Triple Bacon" stacks thick slices of meaty bass, drums, percussion and guitar into a multi-decked afrobeat and highlife sandwich, joyous and tasty.

The relentlessly undulating serpentine horn chart in the title track is remarkably arranged and even more expertly played. This tune comes out of the box sounding like it's already been (pre-)remixed by The Chemical Brothers—a computerized rhythm like the underbelly of a rampaging mechanical bull driving a Latin brass band's march through ancient Egyptian deserts, and ending with a birdsong's curtain call of solitary flute against harmonizing electronics. Simply remarkable.

Recorded live, with half captured in a Baptist church, Runnin' for the Ghost presents the sound of tomorrow's music, more than a few days early.

Track Listing: Return of the March; Seeing the Bigger Picture; Van Chatter; Runnin’ for the Ghost; Hired Guns; Burning Van; Kang’s Lament; Triple Bacon; The G; Sahara Cell Phones; Another Grain of Sand.

Personnel: Alicia Aubin: trombone; Ray McNamara: guitar; Tyler Burchfield: baritone sax, flute; Greg Blair: baritone sax; Andrew Klein: drums, cymbals, percussion; Lucas Ashby: congas, percussion, effects; Angelo Peters: bass, mini-moog, synthesizers; Dan Barker: guitar, baritone guitar; Dana Billings: Roland Juno, mini-moog, combination organs; Paulie Philippone: mini-moog, Wurlitzer electric piano; combination organs; Lex Schmidt: congas, percussion; Bobby Spellman: trumpet; Jamie Yaman: tenor saxophone; Josh Oxford: mini-moog, synthesizers; Jack Storer: trumpet.

Title: Runnin' for the Ghost | Year Released: 2017 | Record Label: Peace & Rhythm | Blank Slate Records

Tags

comments powered by Disqus

CD/LP/Track Review
Read more articles
Runnin' for the Ghost

Runnin' for the Ghost

Peace & Rhythm | Blank Slate Records
2017

buy

Related Articles

Read Dreams And Other Stories CD/LP/Track Review
Dreams And Other Stories
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: September 22, 2018
Read The Nook CD/LP/Track Review
The Nook
by Geno Thackara
Published: September 22, 2018
Read Julius Eastman - Piano Interpretations CD/LP/Track Review
Julius Eastman - Piano Interpretations
by Troy Dostert
Published: September 22, 2018
Read Moments Before CD/LP/Track Review
Moments Before
by Jakob Baekgaard
Published: September 22, 2018
Read From The Vault: No Security, San Jose '99 (2CD + SD Blu Ray) CD/LP/Track Review
From The Vault: No Security, San Jose '99 (2CD + SD...
by John Kelman
Published: September 22, 2018
Read with whom you can be who you are CD/LP/Track Review
with whom you can be who you are
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: September 21, 2018
Read "Spiritual Impressions" CD/LP/Track Review Spiritual Impressions
by Jerome Wilson
Published: March 16, 2018
Read "The Way Home" CD/LP/Track Review The Way Home
by Joe Gatto
Published: November 23, 2017
Read "Der Verboten" CD/LP/Track Review Der Verboten
by Glenn Astarita
Published: December 7, 2017
Read "Provenance" CD/LP/Track Review Provenance
by Karl Ackermann
Published: November 17, 2017
Read "Audacity" CD/LP/Track Review Audacity
by Mike Jurkovic
Published: June 30, 2018
Read "when the shade is stretched" CD/LP/Track Review when the shade is stretched
by Mark Sullivan
Published: January 17, 2018