Wednesday, December 19, 2012

M'lumbo, Tuning In To Tomorrow

No doubt there will be "jazz purists" who will dislike this album on the grounds that there are things that don't belong. Collage, voice and other sampling, electricity, hip-hop elements, things that relate to drums n' bass, synthesizers, oh you know, the litany of things.

But Tuning In To Tomorrow (Pursuance 04) by M'lumbo works. It works as a kind of large band multi-voiced paean to retro-futurism.

There's the core band: Robert Jordan Ray Flateau on keys and sampling, Cecil Young on trumpet, Dehran Duckworth on congas and percussion, Jaz Sawyer on drums, Brian O'Neill, guitar and sampling. Sax players Vin Veloso and Paul Alexandre Meurens head up the reed section. Then there are two additional horns that expand the band from time-to-time: special guest Jane Ira Bloom on soprano and Adrian Mira on alto and clarinet.

There are some nice charts for larger band that coexist with the samples. They are retro-future related and so fit in well. There are funk/jazz-rock rhythmic feels, good solos when called for, serious swinging and a kind of psychedelic-electric ambiance and general outness at times. The Dehran-Jaz nexus is something good to hear, too.

It's not quite like anything else out there. The first listen may find you scratching your head. But keep listening. There is a lot to absorb and once you start doing that, you'll start hearing it as a whole.

These folks are into something.

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