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First Word Records

Takuya Kuroda ‎– Fly Moon Die Soon

$39.00

First Word Records

Takuya Kuroda ‎– Fly Moon Die Soon

$39.00

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The Japanese trumpeter’s dense and cosmic sixth album blends jazz with Afrobeat, hip-hop, neo-soul, and funk.

akuya Kuroda hails from Kobe, Japan, a nation that to a dedicated strand of Western jazz obsessive serves as a sacred tomb of rare riches. You can place the trumpeter next to 20th-century Japanese virtuosos such as Toshiko Akiyoshi, Masabumi Kikuchi, Ryo Fukui, and Koichi Matsukaze, and he looks extremely comfortable in the lineage: All respected the core tenets of jazz while offering their own unique interpretations. Kuroda, after all, is a guy who has name-dropped Lee Morgan as an inspiration while playing in DJ Premier’s touring outfit, the Badder band.

Having relocated to New York to study jazz and contemporary music at The New School in the mid-2000s, Kuroda has since traversed the city as a recording artist—he notably spent some time on Blue Note Records—and musician for hire. Sixth album Fly Moon Die Soon is the work of a man who has undertaken his own musical Gulliver’s Travels. The album’s nine cuts are united by Kuroda’s determination to branch out from jazz and into hip-hop, funk, Afrobeat, electronica, and neo soul. But Kuroda isn’t simply quoting corners of his own record collection; he skillfully synthesizes his influences, hitting sweet spots that feel purely of his own creation.

Most apparent is the music of 1970s West Africa (Kuroda has previously collaborated with a group of similar interest in New York’s Akoya Afrobeat). The horns, guitar stabs, and rattling percussion of “ABC” gesture heavily toward Fela Kuti, while the driving rhythms of “Moody” recalls 1970s Afro-funk bands like the Funkees and Monomono. The brass instruments throughout Fly Moon Die Soon are often used to deploy catchy riffs, Kuroda’s trumpet frequently amalgamating with Corey King’s trombone. The title track shows a more experimental side, with programmed beats and a Moog bassline that swirls like a Thundercat jam. It’s the kind of dense and cosmic jazz hybrid that would blow minds over at Brainfeeder. - Pitchfork

Label: First Word Records ‎– FW216

Format: Vinyl, LP, Album

Country: UK

Released: 18 Sep 2020

Genre: Hip Hop, Jazz, Funk / Soul