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Review: 'Live' by Terence Blanchard

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Monday April 30, 2018

From Something Else! Reviews

Terence Blanchard featuring the E-Collective – Live (2018)
By: Sammy Stein

What do you do when your country seems to be falling into ever more violent times, and there seems an out-of-control spiraling of toxicity? What can you say? How can you make an attempt to offer a message of peace and restoration of humanity? If you are a five-time Grammy award-winning musician and you have a powerful weapon at your disposal, you use it.

[…] Blanchard says, “Chaos is what we’re experiencing now, and also where we’re headed. Take any topic: When you have the public shouting at the top of their lungs to do something and you have a minority of people in power insisting that the real problem lies elsewhere, it makes for ludicrous dialogues and decisions.” This is reflected effectively in the changing dialogue of the composition.

You can put whatever messages you want into “Kaos”; you can understand this or not, but musically this is great and incredibly engaging. Some good solo work and also great integration when the band play as one. Just before the 8-minute mark, it all gets taken down quiet, before Terence Blanchard introduces himself again with a trumpet solo under which the drums set up a mesmerizing rhythm, counterpointed beautifully by the piano. The trumpet is divine but also the bass and drums on this section, which act as a secure safety net delivering the perfect counter to Terence’s soaring and ecstatic top notes. The end is crashing and met with rapturous applause. Quite right, too.

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