Jasper Høiby, Planet B

Less satisfying than anything by Phronesis or from Malija the eco-themed concept album Planet B shapes the great bassist Jasper Høiby's tonal surety of execution around the highly melodic saxophone sound of Josh Arcoleo with a new name to me Marc …

Published: 26 Mar 2020. Updated: 3 months.

Less satisfying than anything by Phronesis or from Malija the eco-themed concept album Planet B shapes the great bassist Jasper Høiby's tonal surety of execution around the highly melodic saxophone sound of Josh Arcoleo with a new name to me Marc Michel on drums proving suitably loose and open in his style.

The first of four planned albums aiming to address worthy, significant, themes of ''Humanity, Climate Change, Artificial Intelligence and Monetary Reform'' Planet B includes spoken word wisdom delivered by luminaries such as Charles Eisenstein, author of Sacred Economics.

A studio album recorded in Copenhagen the results are not a million miles away from Phronesis while the musical chairs have been moved around and only Høiby from that trio is present. I miss the pianism and Arcoleo's naturalistic approach does not fill the gap and moves the music to another space entirely although Michel is not such a different drummer to Anton Eger.

Big melodies and there are plenty on the album rattle around more freely without pianistic support and the interjections of the speakers are not that inspiring in context surely missing the point of their inclusion. Most of the tunes were written by Jasper and as usual are eminently listenable to. Plenty of improvisation and adventurous playing is also provided. But the big but: the chemical spark of switched-on trioplay is largely absent. Work in progress? Yes! I'll be interested to see how this early-days project develops and beds in properly after what is only an OK start. SG

Out now on Edition

Three stars.

Tags: Album reviews

Irreversible Entanglements, Who Sent You?

It's rare that you get something truly original entering your ears. And this is, truly, highly original. Not since The Epic has something so obviously important come along. And yet this is so different in scale reaching for the philosopher's stone.

Published: 26 Mar 2020. Updated: 3 months.

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It's rare that you get something truly original entering your ears. And this is, truly, highly original. Not since The Epic has something so obviously important come along. And yet this is so different in scale reaching for the philosopher's stone.

Grounded in a spiritual Coltranian sense in the undertow with spoken word poetry on top, black consciousness, meditational profundity swim here in Afrofurist quantity and the quality of the musical ideas is expressed on one level by the rapport demonstrated by newcomers to an international audience Keir Neuringer on saxophone and Aquiles Navarro on trumpet. On another, poet Camae Ayewa, aka Moor Mother, is a Gil Scott-Heron for our times, her words have a ringing, compelling doomsday quality to them that make you sit up, then stand up.

Playing original Afrofuturist tunes Irreversible Entanglements are the band for our times. They have the inspiration of the Art Ensemble of Chicago behind them and when the dust settles surely a sea of audiences in front of them. Superb. SG

Out on the International Anthem label.