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James Blood Ulmer - Black Rock CD (album) cover


James Blood Ulmer


Jazz Rock/Fusion

3.83 | 5 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
4 stars Black Rock indeed!

James "Blood" Ulmer's reinterpretation of Rock, the way he envisions it, in his own planet, one orbiting near the Jimi Hendrix one.

"Black Rock",1982, states the kind of unapologetic and heartfelt black power Rock which never really came to be after Jimi Hendrix' s premature death.

Following his own intuition, his personal influences (which are, actually, the farthest distance from Prog as you could ever imagine them to be), yet close to Prog's Jazz/Fusion in the form of Miles Davis, Ornette Coleman which are also shining moons in these orbits.

Progressive to the top as far as time signature syncopation, according to the Prog's unwritten "book of protocols", goes and breaking away from all kind of "what expected" Jazz/Fusion cliched habits by owning a unique musical language, both as performer and composer, which includes his majestic and deep vocals, when he sings, which happens briefly in this album in which he features vocalist Irene Datcher on a couple of tracks.

As far as giving an explanation of what to expect, music wise, for those not previously acquainted with the "BLOOD", this album explores the possibilities in blending SIMULTANEOUSLY> Rock, Rhythm and Blues, Punk and funky Psychedelics in a very Prog and un-Jazz/Prog fashion, which irreverence, here and there, may scare away some Rock/Jazz purists, but will welcome some F. Zappa kind of followers here and there the same.

Daring and personal with a loosely/tight clockwork 4 piece unit (+ sax on two tracks) performances, his personal musical language continues what the previous and groundbreaking "Free Lancing", 1981, proposed.

****4 PA stars

admireArt | 4/5 |


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