Michael Brecker: African Skies


African Skies


Michael Brecker (tenor sax)


Tales from the Hudson (Impulse IMPD-191)

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Michael Brecker (tenor sax), McCoy Tyner (piano), Pat Metheny (guitar), Dave Holland (bass), Jack DeJohnette (drums),

Don Alias (percussion)


Composed by Michael Brecker


Recorded: New York, 1996


Rating: 90/100 (learn more)

In this Michael Brecker composition, we find a wonderful example of how creatively arranged instrumen- tation played by sympathetic and talented musicians can paint a sonic landscape that transports the listener to any exotic destination. The song starts with a rhythmic bottom that could easily have been taken from an indigenous African tribal celebration. A complex and rapid-fire bassline by the nimble Holland and a polyrhythmic cacophony of drum rolls, stick and cymbal work by DeJohnette and Alias send this tune on its celebratory way. Tyner is in his element with the percussive nature of this song, and he solos with reckless abandon. A soaring solo by Brecker is executed to perfection, strongly complemented by a relentless rhythm section and Metheny's comping guitar. The piece bows out much like an African sky might at dusk, with a setting sun quietly yet beautifully fading from view.

Reviewer: Ralph A. Miriello

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