Get the Blessing’s Lope and Antilope is out on Monday and is reviewed below. ‘Corniche' the third track from the album is now streaming here for the first time
Get the Blessing
Lope and Antilope
Naim Jazz ****
The Bristol band’s last album OCDC was built around some of their most outsize bass grooves to date, and while there are fewer statement bass moments on Lope and Antilope, Get the Blessing’s fourth album bristles with more improvising and ensemble ingenuity and the result is an album that manages to unleash the momentum trip hop hampered by the constraints of downtempo dance music could never really tackle.
Taking inspiration from Ornette Coleman and Don Cherry is both a blessing (no pun intended) and a curse: a powerful signifier but also a distraction as the band sounds nothing like Coleman and Cherry in terms of atonality or free jazz. Get the Blessing are not really about recreating the past although they draw from it. And for the first time the band move into more of a Cool School space, Clive Deamer pummelling away existentially on ‘Quiet’ as if that’s all he’s been put on the planet to do. And there is a real sang froid about the playing, Barr’s bass figures complex and creative, and particularly in the way both horn players saxophonist Jake McMurchie and trumpeter Pete Judge laconically while away their soloing space, the pair finding time for a bit of woozy sarcasm now and then, say on ‘Little Ease’ or on the Poirot theme-like ‘Numbers’ the sound of the band rubbery and modern. You might think that the tunes get in the way of the improvising because they’re all pretty catchy but that’s not the case. It's good to have them back.
Released on 20 January