Jazzers were getting weird.
Cascading electric vibrations juxtaposed collagelike with traditional tones and. Classical technique. Proto-sequenced modular synthesizers coexisted with upright bass, castaway classical instruments like the bass clarinet and Afro-Cuban drums. Funk was an undercurrent. Sophistication and psychedelic expansions melting together in a mushroom cloud of echo.
Good times and bad simultaneously. Harmony and dissonance side by side. Everyone had an afro-pseudonym Herbie Hancock was Mwandishi, Benny Maupin was Mwile, Eddie Henderson as Mganga, Julian Priester as Pepo, Buster William’s CRUSHING the bass Mchezaji, Billy Hart as Jabali and a few outsiders with no alter ego (dr Patrick Gleeson synths Buck Clark conga/Bongo)
It was a strange time and I don't blame anyone wanting to change their name and forsake their place in the ever tortured fragmented and denialistic culture of their actual birthland. A place so dichotomously anachronistic that surely it must be a fantasy/tragedy. How could one exist in such a dramatically ironic place? Expressing the discord here on this album, cognitive dissonance as sound. Hidden Shadows is my jam. A nod to Miles a bow to buddha a knee to the promise of freedom. A sonic purging. Baptism in the continuum of music and all musicians’ struggle to define a moment, to momentarily grasp a shadow of presence. This group was the precursor to the funkier and less tortured Herbie Hancock/Headhunters group that would set the world on fire with funk fusion later. First, they had to work some shit out in a world gone mad and find peace in the unalterable chaos.