DownBeat March 2021

Angel Bat Dawid And Tha Brotherhood Live INTERNATIONAL ANTHEM0037 HHHH Listening to these live performances, mostly cap- tured at the 2019 edition of the JazzFest Berlin, is an alarming, revelatory and ultimately reward- ing experience. The Berlin concert showcases an artist vibrating with so much unfettered emo- tional conviction that it sometimes threatens her composure. And there’s ample reason for that. Two days before the performance, singer Viktor Le Givens, Angel Bat Dawid’s longtime collaborator, passed out on the Chicago streets, en route to the airport to make the Berlin con- cert. He woke up in the hospital without his personal belongings. When Dawid’s manager explained the situation to festival producers, they reportedly responded coldly that if she couldn’t find a replacement, her performance feewouldbe reduced. She and her band also reportedly expe- rienced multiple shards of racist microagressions at the Duke EllingtonHotel in Berlin. While Le Givens eventually made it to Berlin in time for the performance, Dawid’s seeth- ing anger nearly was irrepressible. That crack- ling fury kindles the concert. Dawid’s a gift- ed multi-instrumentalist, singer and composer who’s already prone to shamanistic performance art. She and her ensemble superbly use their rage and proclivities toward theatrics to their artistic advantage. Toward the end of brooding “Black Family,” Dawid pleads with the audience to affirm Black lives by singing with her, “The Black family is the strongest institution in the world.” In the face of a

Wolfgang Lackerschmid/ Chet Baker Quintet Sessions 1979 DOT TIME 8018 HHH 1/2 Chet Baker. LarryCoryell. BusterWilliams. Tony Williams. Wolfgang Lackerschmid. One of these names is not like the other, which raises the question: How did Lackerschmid, a solid if lit- tle-known vibes player from Germany, end up fronting such a stellar quintet? In 1978, Lackerschmid met Baker at a festi- val near Munich, and mentioned he was work- ing on some duets for trumpet and vibraphone. When Baker expressed interest, Lackerschmid arranged the studio session that produced Ballads For Two , which was reissued by Dot Time in 2018. Flash forward a few months. Larry Coryell catches the Lackerschmid/Baker duo live and expresses interest in recording with them. Lackerschmid jokes that he’d do it if they had a drummer and bassist named “Williams.” A few weeks later, Baker’s manager lands Tony Williams and Buster Williams, and a session is convened. If only the music itself were so full of seren- dipity. Although Lackerschmid more than holds his own, offering a nicely funky turn on Tony Williams’ “Mr. Biko” and perfectly rendering the dreamy mood of Coryell’s “Rue Gregoire Du Tour,” Baker barely registers. He plays some quietly pretty lines on “Here’s That Rainy Day,” but otherwise seems content to ride the rhythm section’s energy. Not that listeners should blame him: Both Williamses are on fire throughout, hard-swinging and giddily polyrhythmic, while Coyrell’s solos are soulful and incendiary. This reissue adds a pair of previously unheard alter- nate performances, pumping up the playing time to a respectable 48minutes.  —J.D. Considine Quartet Sessions 1979: Mr. Biko; Balzwaltz; The LatinOne; Rue GregoireDuTour; Here’s That RainyDay; TokuDo; RueGregoireDu Tour (Rehearsal); Balzwaltz (Alternate). (47:39) Personnel: Wolfgang Lackerschmid, vibraphone; Chet Baker, trumpet; LarryCoryell, guitar; BusterWilliams, bass; TonyWilliams, drums. Ordering info:

reticent audience, her request grows angry, even- tually exploding into sobbing caterwauls in an act of demanding respect. “Why do you hate us so much?” Dawid asks in cathartic admonishment. She counters that rebuke, however, with such uplifting yet equally confrontational excursions as the searing “We Are Starzz” and the sardon- ic “The Wicked Shall Not Prevail,” a celebra- tory gesture toward Le Givens’ delayed arrival to the festival. If there’s any recent jazz album that embodies the old adage “lightning in a bottle,” this is it.  —John Murph Live: Enlightenment; Destination; Capetown; Black Family;What Shall I TellMyChildrenWhoAreBlack; London;WeHearbyDeclare TheAfrican Look;WeAre Starzz; VIKTORious Return; ThaWicked Shall Not Prevail;MeloDeez FromHeab’N; Dr.WattzN’ Em; HELL. (79:08) Personnel: Angel Bat Dawid, clarinet, keyboards, vocals; Deacon Otis Cooke, vocals, synthesizer; Viktor LeGivens, vocals, auxiliary instruments; XristianEspinoza, tenor saxophone, percussion; NormanW. Long, electronics, synthesizer; Dr. AdamZanolini, bass, bass guitar, flute, soprano saxophone, percussion; IsaiahCollier, Asher SimisoGamedze, drums. Ordering info:


Powered by