Thursday, May 13, 2010

Soil & "Pimp" Sessions — 6 (2010)

Japanese punk-jazz sextet Soil & "Pimp" Sessions are back with their sixth full-length in as many years. Simply dubbed 6, it's the band's most accomplished set to date and out now on Gilles Peterson's Brownswood label.

Raucous and relentless tracks like "Papa's Got a Brand New Pigbag" and "Double Trouble" amply demonstrate SPS's aesthetic: Blend boisterous, high energy soul jazz with ferocious chops and hit "pulverize". And by no means is it just a bunch of noise. Hell to the no. There are melodies a plenty swirling around in this stew, but beware — this shit is hot. Mess around and you might get burned.

So, who are these jazz punks anyway. According to their rap sheet, they include Shacho (agitator, spirit), Tabu zombie (trumpet), Motoharu (sax), Josei (piano), Akita Goldman (bass) and Midorin (drums). When's the last time you encountered a jazz group featuring an "agitator"?

First and foremost, SPS is a live band and their albums sound that way, sans audience interaction (though they do have a live DVD if that's what you're looking for). They call their music "death jazz," and while that's amusing and all you don't really get a negative vibe from their music. If anything it's all the way live.

According to the band's PR, "We always felt that in the world of jazz, there was an unwritten rule that the musicians were to concentrate on their techniques and the audience were simply there to admire, like a transmitter/ receiver relationship. We wanted to break away from that and create exciting jazz with far more interaction between the players and the audience."

Judging from 6, they've got the skillz that kill. This isn't jazz to sit calmly listening to, applauding politely after every solo. This shit is for dancing like your pants are on fire. Aw hell, just give it a listen.

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