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Psychedelic Jazz and Soul


Psychedelic Jazz and Soul


Warner Music UK

various artists LP/CD

Psychedelic Jazz and Soul11 tracks of psychedelic jazz and soul taken from the Atlantic and Warner vaults, this compilation presents an incredible listening experience.

Similar in feeling to many a Soul Jazz release - perhaps inspired by them too - Warner UK had a tremendous amount of material to cull from for this 'In Sound' collection.

  1. Gary Burton Vibrafinger (1970) kicks it off with a rocking, driving tune which has distorted vibes, chicken scratch guitar and a repetitive bass- line. This is a great introduction to the disc. A funky no- brainer which ends almost sounding like a Deep Purple track.
  2. Next up is (1968) Yusef Lateef (who has two tracks on here) with Back Home. This track has an afro-styled feel with harmonica, funk bass/piano lines and a gospel chorus which really adds to this true horn blower. I'm sure Fela Kuti listened heavily to this one when he was starting out.
  3. Rahsaan Roland Kirk Freaks For The Festival (1975) has a wonderful horn/keyboard interplay as Rahsaan raps over this funky tune freaky style.
  4. This record gets even more free form on Sun Ra Spontaneous Simplicity (1973). Sun Ra is one of my faves, and he doesn't fail me on this one. Recorded one year after 1972's Space Is The Place, Sun Ra was at a height of creativity - and this track is no different with it's broken down rhythms coercing, the repeating bass, and Sun Ra's stellar keyboards bringing this number alive.
  5. Probably the most exciting recordings on this compilation include two by Freddie Hubbard - Track five is This is Combat I Know (1971) with it's odd electronic instrumentation and jazz pluckings with a voiced narration overtop - eventually becoming an almost found sound symphony.
  6. The second Yusef Lateef song "Raymond Winchester" has strange vocalizations and a funky horn backdrop vs strings. Pretty early on, there's a really wah wah'd out guitar solo.
  7. Some kick-ass jazz is up next on Charles Lloyd's Sorcery (1968) sounding like it should be in a tv show from the late 60s - things really gets jamming on that flute. Ok, and you're wondering where the soul is?
  8. Well, Track 8. is from Black Heat - Check It All Out (1974) is only slightly out of place on this disc (as the only true Funk band included). This is up there with great lost funk along side the Undisputed Truth - following firmly in the Temptations / Curtis Mayfield Superfly / Edwin Starr War - style of socially consciousness - and its a killer as 7 minute groover.
  9. Charlie Mariano Mirror (1972) plods along like a Miles Davis Bitches Brew styled tune with the added element of a female vox to accompany the horn solo.
  10. Eddie Harris and Smoke Signals - Eddie Harris is the man! - echoed horns with strummed rhythms and female vox chorus on this one.
  11. Freddie Hubbard finishes us off with Threnody for Sharon Tate. This track is from 1971's "Sing Me A Song Of Songmy" - as was Track 5. Threnody for Sharon Tate has a whispered female voice and devil reporting, freaky all the way round.

All in all this compilation is a 10 out of 10 - or since there are 11 tracks an 11 out of 11. And I think most of this could fit in either a rock or jazz format (or - hey how about jazz or funk?)- the bottom line is you won't lose if you check this disc out.

---Patrick R, March 12, 2002