Art Ensemble of Chicago: Oh Strange, Pt. 2


Oh Strange, Pt. 2


Art Ensemble of Chicago


Live In Paris (Charly SNAD 512)

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Roscoe Mitchell (reeds, percussion), Lester Bowie (trumpet, percussion), Joseph Jarman (reeds, percussion), Malachi Favors Maghostut (bass, percussion).

Composed by Roscoe Mitchell. Lester Bowie, Joseph Jarman, and Malachi Favors Maghostut


Recorded: Paris, October 5, 1969


Rating: 80/100 (learn more)

This is the second portion of an extended collective improvisation, recorded live in concert by the Art Ensemble during its late-1960s Paris residence. Part 2 takes up where Part 1 leaves off, meaning it's a continuation of the latter's dense, percussion-laden free play. The music exudes intensity; these guys may not have been overly concerned with form (or harmony, or even melody, at times), but they're extremely focused in terms of emotion and ensemble interaction. Like Part 1, Part 2 is murkily recorded, so much so that it occasionally resembles a sort of modern, lo-fi ambient music. Not for the passive listener, this recording demands active engagement, which may be asking a bit much. Still, if one is inclined to strap on a pair of cans and kick back for a half hour of concentrated listening, the rewards are apt to be far from negligible.

Reviewer: Chris Kelsey

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