Pin It

CD Review: New Zion w. Cyro's "Sunshine Seas" 

(2016, RareNoise Records)

click to enlarge cd-new-zion-w.-cyro.jpg

On Sunshine Seas, world percussionist Cyro Baptista joins long-time collaborator Jaime Saft's dub-jazz New Zion Trio, who change their name to New Zion and drop the "Trio" for the occasion. This is largely improvised music, but also quite strict in its aesthetic. New Zion is all about groove fluency, open space, and the palpability and personality of individual sounds as they emerge from and disappear back into the river of groove. Saft has long been after something you might call a semi-acoustic take on dub, capturing the outlandish production textures of that Jamaican form with modern jazz tools.

On Sunshine Seas, the buoyant reggae and Afro-Cuban grooves purr along on such highlights as the sublimely subtle "Onda," the psychedelic "Ranking," and the skittering "Samba Jahmeyka." In the great tradition of dub production, they are subject to all manner of sonic interlopers and groovus interruptus: unprecedented vocal happenings, ridiculous and ephemeral synthesized sounds, studio-engineered meltdowns and microblasts courtesy of co-producer Christian Castagno, and the remarkable array of high-character percussion sounds issuing from Baptitsa. The resulting texture is both organic and absurdist, in the high-20th-century sense of the word: hypnotic but also engagingly unpredictable. The rhythm section is utterly onboard with the rules and the intent—New Zion's regular drummer, Craig Santiago, and, on several tracks here, the monster bassist Brad Jones, who has recently engaged in a different kind of roots reclamation with Don Byron's New Gospel Quintet.

Speaking of CD Reviews, Music

  • (2016, RareNoise Records)

Comments

Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

Readers also liked…

  • Nightlife Highlights: Tani Tabbal

    His Bearsville Theater gig on May 17 celebrates the release of Mixed Motion, his third album under his own name, and will feature that disc's trio of Tabbal, bassist Michael Bisio, and saxophonist Adam Siegel.
    • May 1, 2015
  • “Hendrix Of The Sahara” Vieux Farka Touré At Woodstock Sessions On 10/2

    Woodstock Sessions is honored to presend a day with the “Hendrix Of The Sahara” - Vieux Farka Touré

    We cordially invite you to join us as VFT crafts his Woodstock Sessions release.
    • Sep 22, 2016

Hudson Valley Events

submit event

Big Joe Fitz & The Lo-Fis

Sun., Dec. 4, 10 a.m.

Winter Spark-tacular! Media Celebration

Sun., Dec. 4, 10 a.m.-8 p.m. — Spark Media Project's seasonal student film screening is back, and this December,...

View all of today's events

Latest in Music

Related to Music

  • Opera in Phoenicia Park
  • Opera in Phoenicia Park

    With its open-air format, where attendees picnic in the parks and watch the stars emerge during performances, and its $5 youth tickets, the Phoenicia International Festival of the Voice is the perfect place to share with children a love of music and theater, in a variety of styles.
    • Jul 25, 2016
  • More »

More by John Burdick

Hudson Valley Tweets