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Keziah Jones - Black Orpheus (2003) Retail CD
Calling Keziah Jones idiosyncratic sorta belabors the obvious, so it should come as no surprise that the opener, "Afrosurrealism for the Ladies," rolls in with a prominent part for...yeah, you got it, bass clarinet. But the music on Jones' discs has shown a downward trend in cohesion, and the Nigerian-born songwriter/guitarist's first disc in four years continues that pattern because it sounds disjointed, and more so the deeper into the disc you go. The funky "KPAFuca" has a lot of rhythm trips and a deep honking baritone sax, and Jones generally remains faithful to his African space-cadet surrealismmore…, but there are fewer attempts to jump up and generate excitement. It's a moodier, more introspective disc and "Femiliarise," "Wet Questions" (with its drums and falsetto vocals), and "Neptune" establish a mellow, drifting acoustic vibe, the last with a jazzy chord progression and Vincent Segal's cello. Makes you wonder if there's maybe a water theme at play here because the effects vaguely bring to mind "1983... (A Merman I Should Turn to Be)" from Electric Ladyland. The spoken intro to "72 Kilos" cleverly transplants Stevie Wonder's "Living for the City" to Lagos, complete with blaring horns to emulate traffic jams, and the lyrics seems to be an autobiographical rundown (the title quantity refers to Nigerian herb). "All Praises" goes dramatic, with Jones' voice flowing along long melody lines anchored by Julian Siegel's bass clarinet again. But nothing else is that memorable, beyond a pretty display of Jones' very individual style on acoustic guitar in "Autumn Moon," and some latter-day Sly Stone vocal moves. Makes you half-wonder if Black Orpheus half-turned into an Unplugged disc somewhere along the way. Jones makes you wonder a lot here. He's never been direct, but seems even more intent on being fractured, fragmented, and abstruse than ever, playing for himself without giving much thought to enticing the listener along for the ride. You have to be really ready and willing to enter his private universe and language, because Black Orpheus demands it.
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- Keziah Jones - Black Orpheus (2003) Retail CD
- 1473 x 1449 px
- 368 KB
- 178 (0 today)
- 15/05/13 by babalusi
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