Dienstag, 9. Mai 2017

The Mizell Brothers - Sky High

The sibling duo of Larry and Alphonso "Fonce" Mizell revolutionized the sound and shape of jazz-funk - fusing the commercial sensibilities of Motown with the virtuoso musicianship of the Blue Note stable, the brothers (collaborating under their Sky High Productions aegis) produced a series of now-classic LPs of uncommon beauty and elegance, characterized by soaring horns, cosmic synths, celestial string arrangements and sublime rhythms. While jazz purists reviled their efforts, time has conclusively proven the Mizells' singular genius, and their records remain some of the most sampled and celebrated within contemporary hip-hop culture.

Depending on your perspective, producers Larry and Fonce Mizell were either the best or the worst thing ever to happen to venerable jazz label Blue Note. Dispensing with the atonal abstractions of the free jazz era, during the 1970s the brothers steered the company's artists towards psychedelically funky grooves far closer to mainstream urban radio than anything Blue Note had ever dared try. Purists never recovered, but when successive generations far less concerned with tradition and the sanctity of jazz - a music that, it should be noted, for decades prided itself on its mutations and evolutions - rediscovered the Mizells' body of work years after the fact, they honored their cosmic and euphoric sound as the apotheosis of fusion. "Sky High" compiles a dozen of the Mizells' finest moments, 12 songs rivaling the best of funk's halcyon era - highlights include Donald Byrd's "Love's So Far Away," Bobbi Humphrey's "New York Times," Gary Bartz's "Music Is My Sanctuary," and Johnny Hammond's "Starborne."      

Tracklist:

1Rance AllenPeace Of Mind
2Donald ByrdStreet Lady
3Johnny HammondShifting Gear
4Donald ByrdThink Twice
5Bobbi HumphreyNew York Times
6Johnny Hammond  Starborne
7Donald ByrdLove's So Far Away
8Gary BartzMusic Is My Sanctuary
9Bobbi HumphreyUno Esta
10Rance AllenTruth Is Marching On
11Donald ByrdChages (Makes You Want To Hustle)
12A Taste Of HoneyBoogie, Oogie, Oogie
  
  
The Mizell Brothers - Sky High   
(192 kbps, cover art included)

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