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Herbie Hancock - Sextant CD (album) cover

SEXTANT

Herbie Hancock

 

Jazz Rock/Fusion

4.15 | 202 ratings

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trickert
5 stars This is a deep and transformative record. It pulls from trends and innovations ongoing since the 60s in jazz, funk, prog, psychedelia, electronics, and embeds it in an Afro-Futurist framework of real visionary truth and achievement. Very free flowing in some respects--some people have made connections to Krautrock, and that's not wrong--but this is anchored in a very different and specifically American and black sensibility. Glorious bass work flows through the whole album, including some amazing fuzz bass; there's tons of improvisation in horns, keys, and drums. But the point is that all of it grounded in the groove, which never lets up, even as it shifts and morphs. It can take a while to get the complexities and feel how it all hangs together--but that's no different than, say, the first time you put Yes' *Relayer* on the turntable. This record is not song-oriented, though, so it requires a different kind of attunement. But is is so worth it. Dark, heavy, and yet also with great beams of light, it brings together a tremendous sense of jazz-funk groove with improvisational horns and electronics (including mellotron!!!) that is, for me at least, one of the highpoints of early 70s prog, jazz, and funk. An amazing record, and if you want to know it's true meaning, consider the title: Sextant. HH was a navigator, and his vision for the future--an Afro-Futurist future of freedom--still sounds out true and powerful.
trickert | 5/5 |

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