Vernon Reid & Masque: Other True Self
Jazz / Funk / Fusion / Soul
premiera polska: 2006-01-27
kontynent: Ameryka Północna
opakowanie: Jewelcaseowe etui
Sherman Oaks, CA (PRWEB) January 20, 2006 — Vernon Reid, one of the world’s great guitarists and a legendary exponent of the New York downtown music scene, has finished work on the second Vernon Reid & Masque album. Titled “Other True Self”, it is his third “solo? Album in all. The self-produced CD is set for April 18 release on Favored Nations Recordings.
Reid, who has just returned from U.S. and global tours with his mothership group Living Colour, will look to the spring and summer for U.S. tour dates with Masque, his band of accomplished New York players.
On “Other True Self”, he exposes a vivid personal landscape. Each track illuminates one or another side of Vernon Reid: his African lineage in “Prof.. Bebey" the Latin flavor of the melodies he casts over Hank Schroy’s bass pulse and Don McKenzie’s crisp reggae rhythm bed in “Flatbush and Church Revisited? The exhilaration of his unison sprint with keyboardist Leon Gruenbaum on “Game is Rigged" the swirling Middle Eastern energies in “Mind of My Mind"
In addition to many new Reid originals, the album features material written by Masque band members. Gruenbaum contributed “White Face" a heavy, wall-of-guitar rocker in a slow 6/8, while McKenzie created “Kizzy" a slow-turning mobile of glittering sounds. Schroy wrote the enigmatic and abstract “Oxossi"
Speaking of Masque, Reid says, “Chemistry is so important. When you’re around great musicians, it can improve what you do. Leon, for example, pushes me because he’s such a phenomenal musician. He brings out the best in me. Now, when you can have wonderful musicians who fight for every scrap of space, the music will feel like that. But there’s also something to be said about spending time with that challenge. Playing at a high level is a challenge. And when the guys in the band all enjoy what the other guys are doing, that can create something fantastic.?
The album also offers three cover songs: The Tony Williams Lifetime’s “Wild Life Depeche Mode’s “Enjoy the Silence" and Radiohead’s “National Anthem.?
In his life outside the worlds of Masque and Living Colour, Reid has busied himself with scoring. He just completed work on the Lions Gate film “Five Fingers? Starring Laurence Fishburne. He also scored the forthcoming PBS documentary “Almost Home" and a soon-to-be-released horror film, “Shadow: Dead Riot"
Reid was also an omnipresence at the recent New York Guitar Festival. “My relationship with the guitar is not ambivalent at all he states. “After having played it for so long, everything I do now comes down to getting the body, the mind, the heart, and the ear to all work together. I know I can execute certain things with more finesse, but what counts more is that my playing is tied completely to the moment I’m in"
And on “Other True Self”, the moment is worth sharing.
Vernon Reid has been always been a stylistic chameleon. Straddling many musical worlds, he's just as likely to record with Public Enemy as James Blood Ulmer, Jack Bruce or Lafayette Gilchrist. With a general approach best described as metal-edged reckless abandon, he proves on Other True Self that, as always, he's still capable of much more.
Reid's previous album with Masque, Known Unknown (Favored Nations, 2004), sported a completely different lineup than the group's debut, Mistaken Identity (Sony, 1996). This recording features the same lineup as the second record, with the exception of newcomer Don McKenzie on drums. With a shorter gap between these last two records, it's also less of a radical shift, more about continued development of a group sound.
A song titled "Flatbush and Church Revisited would lead one to expect something urban. Instead, it's done reggae beat and dub style, mixed with a minor-key melody that might be more at home on one of John Zorn's Radical Jewish Culture projects. Reid's world view approach is also manifest on the metal-meets-Middle East of "Mind of My Mind. By blending African and American folk traditions, "Prof.… Bebey pays fitting tribute to the late Cameroonian poet/novelist/playwright/musician, who spent his life trying to break down sociopolitical barriers.
That's not to suggest that Reid has deserted his metal disposition. "Game is Rigged starts with a rapid-fire theme, before shifting gears into a some head-banging power chords that serve as a solo vehicle for keyboardist Leon Gruenbaum—who proves himself an equal match to Reid's extremes. Suddenly shifting into a bluesy shuffle, it suggests, perhaps, where Hendrix might be were he still alive today.
The episodic "Afrerika begins in progressive rock territory; McKenzie's thundering toms support an odd-metered opening salvo. Breaking into a high speed figure by Reid that's doubled by Gruenbaum on organ, it sounds like Emerson, Lake and Palmer on steroids. As it ultimately settles into a deep funk groove it proves how, beneath this aggressive veneer, both Reid and Gruenbaum speak a broader jazz language.
Elsewhere, Reid proves it's possible to reinterpret music from a variety of sources from a different perspective. Depeche Mode's anthemic "Enjoy the Silence features bassist Hank Schroy soloing over Reid's electric twelve-string—a respite from Reid's frenzied, whammy-barred explosion earlier on. "Wildlife, originally from the New Tony Williams Lifetime's Believe It (Columbia, 1975), is revisited with a harsher stance than either Williams or guitarist Allan Holdsworth could ever have imagined, even though it never deserts its sing-song theme.
For those who can accept more than a little metal with their rock, ambient electronica, funk and world music, Other True Self is well worth checking out.
by John Kelman
Vernon Reid: electric guitar, electronic guitar, acoustic guitar, six-string banjo
Leon Gruenbaum: keyboards, acoustic piano, samchiillian tip tip tip cheeepeeeee, melodica, toy piano, glockenspiel
Hank Schroy: electric and acoustic bass
Don McKenzie: acoustic and electronic drums
1. Game Is Rigged
2. The National Anthem
3. Flatbush and Church Revisited
5. Enjoy The Silence
6. White Face
12. Mind of My Mind
13. Prof. Bebey
total time - 57:17
wydano: Jan 27, 2006
nagrano: Recorded at Gigantic Studios, New York, NY, October, 2005
more info2: www.livingcolour.com
- Favored Nations Entertainment
- Vernon Reid & Masque
- Other True Self
- Data premiery