In the gentle spirit of Trane
Enrique Torres | San Diegotitlan, Califas | 11/28/2007
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Originally recorded four years after the death of one of his major influences and collaborators, John Coltrane, this disc finds Pharoah Sanders exploring the depths of jazz. It makes one wonder if this is the direction Trane might have taken. The disc reflects his then recent stints with Alice Coltrane as this disc has spiritual overtones. The collection of musicians to make this disc is impressive. It features thirteen different musicians, including notables like Norman Connors on drums, Cecil McBee and Stanley Clark on bass, Sedatrius Brown on vocals and nice percussion work by Joe Bonner with Kylo Kylo adding a Eastern touch to the percussion. Recorded over a period of two years the personnel varies. The three part "Village of The Pharoahs" has Sanders playing a subdued Traneish soprano sax in the midst of some nice improvisational Eastern sounding music that goes to the edge , just peeks into the realm of avant garde, than retreats into peaceful melodic dronning music. If you are familiar with Sanders you know that sometimes his music is out there going into the chaos like an exploding nebula; there is not much of that on the title track-suite. Sanders allows the "Creator Has A Master Plan" vibe to roll on "Mansion worlds." The opening percussion and piano is very similar and invokes that gentle calm before the storm. When Sanders finally blows his soprano it builds in ferocity, not to the point of chaos but rather runs that are stimulating without irritating. The peaceful vibe triumphs and the emerging sax vanquished to a voice in a quiet whisper. It is a beautiful peace in which Stanley clark lays down some nice bass riffs in his own inimitable style. Pharoahs Sanders homage to jazz great Lee Morgan is all about serenity. It features flute (not by Sanders) and sax intermingling primarily to createa harmonious and composed tribute. All in all this is a lovely Sanders disc where his explorations are considerable in a amicable,mute style that reflects Sanders in some of his late period works. The one exception is "Went Like it Came" that is more free form jazz, with vocals that invoke a jazz rhythm and blues commingling. Well. "Myth" is a little far out too as Sanders trades jibberish vocals(not really scat) with Brown for what proves to be interesting but the best moments are without vocals. If you like the gentler side of Pharoah Sanders but still challenging than this disc might be for you. Other Sanders discs you might like include Karma,Tauhid or Love Will Find a Way which reflect different time periods in this Coltrane proteges career. Recommended for jazz aficionados who remember the spirit of John Coltrane.