Witches & Devils: Angels




Witches & Devils


At The Empty Bottle (Knitting Factory KFW-282)

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Ken Vandermark (reeds), Mars Williams (reeds), Fred Lonberg-Holm (cello), Jim Baker (keyboards), Kent Kesslar (bass), Steve Hunt (drums).

Composed by Albert Ayler


Recorded: The Empty Bottle, Chicago, August 27, 1997


Rating: 91/100 (learn more)

Albert Ayler's brand of jazz, while bursting with torrents of energy and emotion, was not without its tender and spiritual side. Witches and Devils gets inside this Ayler composition and takes advantage of both its passion and quiet, underlying spirit. Vandermark and Williams begin with rising joy, delivering an intense, almost prayer-meeting feel that morphs in a blast furnace of energy. Midsong, the heat is dialed back to allow an extended cello and bass duet. The intertwined lines, while slowly allowing the quiet to take over, are no less effective in channeling the spirit of Ayler. Inspiring stuff!

Reviewer: Mark Saleski

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