Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
|Ronald Shannon Jackson|
Genres: Jazz, Pop, R&B
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Another ronald shannon jackson masterpiece
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Red Warrior was a departure for Ronald Shannon Jackson. Originally released on Axiom records and produced by Bill Laswell, Red Warrior had more of a rock/metal edge than some of its predecessors. With three guitarists and two bassists and no horns, Red Warrior has rambling bluesy numbers like Gate to Heaven, funky rhythms and screaming metal guitars. As usual Jackson plays sharp polyrhythms that keep the group focused. While some of the soaring guitar solos are unfortunately a little reminiscent of joe satriani or steve vai--guitarists stevie salas toured with satriani--there is enough going on around it to keep things interesting. Of particular note is Elders, a 13 minute track with some superb bass solos. While different from some of the Decoding Society's more jazzy excursions, Red Warrior is an awesome album and is a great addition to any collection. Do yourself a service and pick up any recording you can find by this landmark group."
Michael Stack | North Chelmsford, MA USA | 09/23/2005
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Ronald Shannon Jackson's Decoding Society lineup began shifting dramatically after the departure of Vernon Reid and Melvin Gibbs from the band, but no shift was as dramatic as this one. Removing the band from its usual context of horns and electric rhythm, Jackson instead assembled an ensemble of three guitarists-- session ace Jef Lee JOhnson (everyone from Billy Joel to McCoy Tyner), Stevie Salas (evidentally viewed as Steve Vai and Joe Satriani in Japan, served a sideman for everyone from Bootsy Collins to Rod Stewart) and Jack DeSalvo-- and two bassists-- Ramon Pooser and Conrad Matthieu. The result is more or less what one would expect, by and large an assault, and it works remarkably well.
Shifting effortless from moody ballads reminiscent of Jackson's mentor's "Lonely Woman" ("Ashes") to a fractured, deep blues groove ("Gate to Heaven") and churning funk ("In Every Face"), the album is electric, eclectic, and explosive, full of guitar pyrotechnics and blistering playing throughout-- particularly stunning solos are to be found on "Red Warrior" (with a frantic solo recalling Sonny Sharrock's work) and bass feature "Elders". But throughout, it's Jackson who, unlike on other albums by Decoding Society groups, steals the show. His playing is jaw dropping throughout.
As a nice coda, "Harmolodic Christmas" goes a bit moodier and quieter, with acoustic guitars, odd synthy leads, and a superb bass that cools things down to close the record. All in all, it works pretty well. Jackson's done slightly better, but this one is fairly accessible and well worth the listen. Recommended."