I’m not enough of a jazz aficionado to post a proper review but after last year’s discovery of the lost Coltrane tapes there’s another massive find from the vaults out there. In 1972 Charles Mingus broke a years-long musical silence, including concerts in Detroit with a quintet. Recordings from the run via a radio broadcast have emerged – clocking in at four hours of Mingus magic including interviews and announcements, from a short-lived artists space called Strata Gallery.
I don’t quite have the language to really describe these recordings but they sound absolutely brilliant. The tracks are long, long takes on Mingus classics and jazz standards. The quintet all sound at the top of their games, and it hits that spot where there’s improvisation going to the outer limits without ever losing sense of the tune at the base of it all.
Here’s the Pitchfork review which has lots of clever language and gets it right.
Charles Mingus: Jazz In Detroit/Strata Concert Gallery/46 Selden is on Spotify and emusic. Have a listen. It’s great.