Skip to product information
1 of 1

Kamasi Washington
Fearless Movement


Regular price
$70.00 SGD
Regular price
Sale price
$70.00 SGD


Kamasi Washington's maximalist musical statements use jazz as a touchstone before spinning off in multiple directions while remaining inseparable from the massive whole, as evidenced by 2015's The Epic and 2018's Heaven and Earth (both triple albums). Fearless Movement, his first long-player in six years, leaves out the choirs and orchestras but spans nearly 90 minutes over 12 tracks. He used his road band and a host of collaborators to execute this project. Washington began composing Fearless Movement during the pandemic while thinking about dance in a larger context, not only as art but as a prime engine for human movement. He also became a father; his daughter Asha (the blur on the cover) was born during the pandemic. The saxophonist became poignantly aware of his own mortality, understanding Asha would witness much after his passing.

"Lesanu" is the opening invocation, in which a cymbal wash finds Patrice Quinn and others chanting "Sing unto the Lord, a new song," in Geʽez (the language of the Ethiopian Orthodox Bible) and English. The band -- trombonist Ryan Porter, trumpeter Dontae Winslow, organist/keyboardist Brandon Coleman, pianist Cameron Graves, bassist Miles Mosely, and drummers Tony Austin and Ronald Bruner, Jr. — along with an army of percussionists set a collision of post-bop and syncopated modalism guided by handclaps. "Asha the First" is based around a piano figure by his daughter. A funky wah-wah guitar, rolling drums, and chanted vocals by Quinn and brothers Taj and Ras Austin offer a chorale before Thundercat rains a harmolodic bass solo, answered by Washington's blistering tenor solo above cascading jazz-funk. The Austins claim the track's second half, rapping in tandem. Washington, a student of Herbie Hancock, threads complex jazz charts through massively funky R&B and bumping hip-hop.

Elegiac brass introduces "Computer Love," a spacey, soulful ballad sung by Quinn with Coleman on vocoder, DJ Battlecat's turntables, and Woody Aplanalp's warm guitar. On the clavinet-and-horn-fueled funk of "Get Lit," P-Funk's George Clinton and rapper D Smoke share vocals. "Dream State" begins in abstraction with organ, sequenced synth, and Washington's alto suggesting the influence of Steve Reich's contrapuntal minimalism. Andre 3000's flute joins the dialog, as keys, rubbery bass, and breaking snares evoke something like Grover Washington, Jr.'s "Mister Magic." "Together," an Afrofuturist ballad, features vocal soulman BJ the Chicago Kid; it segues into the transcendent post-bop-R&B fusion of "The Garden Path," featuring vocalist Dwight Trible. "Road to Self" is a 13-minute composition that moves fluidly across electronica, progressive jazz, spiritual post-bop, contemporary jazz, and funky fusion. Astor Piazzolla's "Prologue" closes the album, employing Latin percussion under jazz-rock fusion and post-bop in a buoyant celebration of this band's creative power. 

Track by track, Fearless Movement is relentless in exploring new sonic terrains and paying homage to musical forbears. It is Washington's most cohesive statement. He doesn't merely juxtapose instruments and sounds, he painstakingly combines them, bringing joy, intensity, political, social, and spiritual poignancy in a vision at once focused, restless, and playful. — (via AllMusic)

Label: Young
Format: 2x Vinyl, LP, Album, Stereo
Country: Worldwide
Released: May 3, 2024
Genre: Jazz

File under: Modern / Future Jazz