Thursday, September 3, 2009

Herbie Hancock: Mwandishi Phase

Herbie Hancock is a jazz pianist who once was part of Miles Davis' ensemble. Easily one of the most influential pianists up there with Monk and and Sun Ra. This is him n his Mwandishi phase (what he named his ensemble) he experimented a lot with synthesizers and non-conventional forms of jazz and probably drugs. Creating what I call a bullshit genre but others call Jazz-fusion.

mwandishi (1970)
This is my favorite album by him. There is so much strange spacey funk in this album. Really dark and complex. Hancock's use of synthesizers is definitely a very impressive thing that sticks out to me. I own this on vinyl and must blast it at least once a week in my room. Serious jazz.


crossings (1972)
This is I feel the second "heaviest" feeling album of these three. Its very minimal at times while maintaining the spacey atmosphere. Pay attention to the complexity of the percussion on "Sleeping Giant". It's insane


sextant (1973)
This is definitely the most memorable album for me. I remember getting extremely high to this and watching one of my friends puke, the other stare blankly into space and then burst into laughter, and the other one with his hand in the album sleeve rubbing his face on it. This is the climax of the three I've posted as far as spacey atmosphere goes. Still very fucking funky in the bass grooves and the drums. This was Hancock's first release on Columbia Records (moved from Warner Bros.). This album didn't sell very well thus ending his Mwandishi Phase and forcing him to play more approachable mainstream jazz i.e. the album "Head Hunters".


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