Jazzman Records recently released very rare material from Master Plan Inc., a band from Chicago led by Fred Shorts. All songs are previously unreleased, so if you’re into modern soul, 70s funk, smooth mid-tempo crossover dancers or high energy funk blasts – you’re in for a treat! Available now at Jazzman’s online store.
‘Hammer, Anvil, Stirrup’ is the debut album from The Sign of Four wich is a new creative concept from the Natural Yogurt Band’s Miles Newbold. Recorded live at Chicken Shack studios in Nottingham, real musical instruments are used to create a swirling jungle of throbbing palpitations evoking the spaced-out vibes of an unsound mind. It’s an infectious fermentation of debauched instrumental chaos, sometimes calming, but often unnerving, that will leave the listener bewildered, wide-eyed and gasping for more. The 11-track album also contains two tracks from Sun Suite, an alternative incarnation of The Sign of Four, that see out the release in a less chaotic fashion, a sonic antidote to the preceding pandemonium. Available direct via Jazzman Records.
Jazzman Records return with the fourth instalment in their hugely popular ‘Spiritual Jazz’ series. This time, with volume four, the emphasis is solely on; Americans in Europe. It’s well known that throughout the 20th century, fed up with poor working conditions and racism in their home country, many American jazz musicians chose to leave the US in order to live and work in Europe. What’s less well known is how their music developed and evolved during their time on the continent, and how the experience of being a musician in Europe was to shape their respective lives. Over the years countless jazz concerts, festivals and recordings featuring American jazz musicians have taken place all over Europe, yet it’s remarkable how few of these musical artifacts have been evaluated by the jazz community. Jazzman Records sought to assess the European experiences of the American jazzmen, with a specific focus on the progressive sounds of modal jazz and the avant garde. They examined the recordings made by those who crossed the Atlantic just to take in a short tour, as well as those who made more frequent trips, and of course those for whom Europe ultimately became their permanent place of residence. Available 28th of March at Jazzman Records.
Suffused with spiritual uplift but lacking any saccharine in either content or production values, Azanyah communicates in a language that harks back to the great message bearers of an earlier time: the musical language of Coltrane, Pharaoh and their fellow travellers, musicians who had journeyed deep into the wellsprings of the African-American and African traditions, and returned with complex, burnished artifacts that spoke of the highest truths with incandescent urgency. Its musical message underpinned by the deep pulse of the eponymous Mamaniji Azanyah’s bass,” The One” is a document that seems somehow out of time: it comes as a surprise that this album was recorded in the ‘80s, although The One is not a nostalgic throwback to the revolutionary period couple of decades earlier. Rather, it is part of a long continuum of committed visionary sound, drawing strength from the same sources that inspired its forebears, and walking on the same paths toward enlightenment. Raw, earthy, deep jazz – Spiritual Jazz at its finest! Release-Date is April 2nd via Jazzman Records.