Todd Marcus Jazz Orchestra: Blues For Tahrir

Dedicated to the revolutions in Egypt that finally settled in peace for the secular Muslims and Coptic/Evangelical Christians, Blues For Tahrir has bass clarinetist Todd Marcus weave an intriguing suite of sounds with rich themes and exciting solos. The team of Gregory Tardy/ts, Russell Kirk/as, Brent Birckhead/as-fl, Alex Norris tp and Alan Ferber/tb create a rich tapestry of harmonies while the fhythm team of Zavier Davis/p, Jeff Reed/b, Eric Kennedy/dr and Jon Seligman/perc provide exotic rhythms that take you on exciting yet swinging journeys.

The album opens with rich reeds slowly undulating along with a rumbling rhythm that creates a rich and exciting theme that keeps the feet moving, while Marcus’ bass clarinet veers around small winding streets. The four part suite includes Kirk’s piercing alto, while “Reflections” shifts moods from agony to joy and back while Marcus cries through his reed. Reed’s haunting bass solo along with Irene Jalenti’s voice delivers a foreboding mood that you can’t look away from on “Tears on the Square, while the horns close with agonizing harmonies on “Protest.” Tardy delivers a Coltranesques solo on the free spirited and modal “Wahsoulie” while “Bousa” mixes sensuously latin percussion with exotic and longing themes. A read of the classic “Summertime” is as stark as you can get with Jalenti’s voice while she broods along with Alan Ferber’s trombone on “Alien.” This is an exciting album that is both emotive, musical and thought provoking.

Hipnotic Records

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