Hypnotic Brass Ensemble - Book Of Sound

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  • Producent: Honest Jon's
  • Dostępność: Brak / Na zamówienie
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  • Cena netto: 43,90 zł 54,00 zł

Premiera: 08-12-2017

“We started with the principle – the cosmic idea that we were taught by our father from a very young
age – that the stars and planets make a sound, that deep in outer space there is audible harmony.”
With its cathedral-like, richly resonant acoustics, the new HBE album is a brilliant expression of this
interplanetary principle. The album is by turns urgent and contemplative, funky and reflective, varied in
its textures; but entirely of one piece. Underpinned by concepts of our earth’s place in the cosmos,
held in place by meditation, swirling with notions of history, science, theology, ancestry, there is a rich
conceptual brew here. But always, what talks loudest is the music. The album rings with what back in
the 1950s the jazz critic Whitney Balliet called “the sound of surprise”. At a time when the phrase Spiritual
Jazz threatens in some quarters to become a tired cliche, this is a record that makes you believe again
in the genre’s validity.
Talking to Cid, one of the Ensemble’s two trombonists, one phrase recurs: “back to the beginning”. “We
wanted to go back to the beginning, when we were kids, real young, and our father would wake us up
at 5 AM to practice for two hours before breakfast.” One outcome – initially unplanned but subsequently
embraced – is that unlike their two previous albums on Honest Jon’s, this is an album without a drummer.
“When we started, as Wolf Pack, just brothers on the street with our horns, there wasn’t a kit in sight.”
Book Of Sound retains plenty of rhythmic heft, but the absence of a drummer opens up space for a
notably varied instrumental palette. Acoustic guitar, piccolo, synthesiser, alto sax – none of them typical
HBE Instruments – all have their place on the album. Most striking perhaps are the vocal lines that
thread through the album and give it a palpable warmth. “In Wolf Pack, we rapped and played, this time
we took it a step further.”
Sessions were recorded in Brooklyn and Chicago, and brilliantly mixed at Abel Garibaldi’s studio in the
Loop (“Abel was like a musician on this record”), and it’s the Hypnotic’s hometown that permeates. For
Cid this is a deeply Chicago record: “it’s got the vibe of the lake, the vibe of the prairies opening up to
the west”. It also has the vibe of those Sun Ra Arkestra albums recorded in Chicago in the 1950s, and
– of course - the Phil Cohran albums from the 1960s.
It’s Phil Cohran (the father of all seven members of the Ensemble and their first teacher, and not just in
music) who is the album’s guiding spirit. For Cid it’s a major regret that, in the months before their father’s
death early in 2017, Phil was not well enough to play on the album. “He loved the whole idea, and we
had the perfect place for his zither”. But Book Of Sound is a magnificent testament to their Cohran
legacy. “You know, it’s tough trying to satisfy everybody with our music. It’s hard enough satisfying
ourselves, let alone the jazz scene, the hip hop guys, what have you. With this album we just dropped
all that as a consideration, and tuned into deeper principles.”
LEAD THE WAY “this goes way back, to before Hypnotic; originally it was purely a vocal track.”
PURPLE AFTERNOON “the bassline is a riff that’s been around for years – each song on the album is
about a different time of day – this is for mellowing out when the sun is setting.”
KEPRA “Kepra is the Egyptian name for the scarab beetle that was placed on the Pharoah’s crown, and
represents manifestation – that’s Yoshe singing the treble line.”
MORNING PRAYER “this was literally our morning prayer when we were kids – a circular drone around
the core note of F – it’s to give you stillness – and the core around which the album rotates.”
NOW “we wanted to write a Phil Cohran style song, re-creating his format as a writer – he taught us that
all music is “now-music”, of the moment, never the same.”
SOLSTICE “ Solstice is a celebration of the earth’s most precious day – that’s our mother Aquilla on
vocal – the track is inspired by the old spiritual: ‘Ezekiel saw the wheel Away in the middle of the air’.”
MIDNIGHT “inspired by when our father used music therapy instead of methadone to fight the heroin
epidemic that hit in the 1960s - the trumpet line is our father’s, and Aquila’s vocal is inspired by Ella
Pearl Jackson, the incredible singer who worked with our father.”
SRI NEROTI “Sri was our father’s yoga teacher with the most amazing ability to manipulate his body –
the concept here is mind over matter. That’s our mother Maia on piccolo.”
HEAVEN AND EARTH “ a tune in the Chinese mode that goes back to when we had a gig in Chicago
on New Year’s Eve at the time of the millennium and everyone was a little uptight. Clouds are moving
across the sky, a storm is coming!”
SYNAPSIS “This is Rocco’s tune about the neurology of sound. Synapsis is how the brain
communicates with the body.”
ROYALTY “Huda’s tune. Huda is short for Yehuda, the lion of the tribe of Judah – the king of kings. We
spent a long time trying to transfer Clef’s synths part to the horns but in the end left it in – the right thing
to do.”