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Eddie Henderson - Inside Out CD (album) cover

INSIDE OUT

Eddie Henderson

 

Jazz Rock/Fusion

3.97 | 10 ratings

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js (Easy Money)
Special Collaborator
Honorary Collaborator / Retired Admin
4 stars Herbie Hancock's psychedelic fusion masterpiece, Crossings, was such a powerful work that it practically inspired an entire musical movement, albeit one that was short lived, but a movement that brought us many excellent progressive jazz recordings. Like Crossings, Eddie Henderson's Inside Out features top notch innovators such as Bennie Maupin on reeds, Hancock on keyboards and Patrick Gleeson on synthesizer, but is missing one key player; producer David Rubinson. The more I listen to the various spin-off groups from Herbie's Sextet, the more I'm convinced that Rubinson is the key to Crossing's superb sound, lay-out and compositional flow. Some of the production problems on Inside Out include a bass that is too loud and persistent, and a drum mix that is vague and muddy because it favors snare and crash over everything else. With a little better production this album could have been a masterpiece.

From a musical perspective this record is top-notch. All the elements you would expect from this collective are here: brilliant woodwind and muted horn orchestrations, abstract melodies that mirror mid-20th century composers, Gleeson's unique synthesizer plus echo tone colors that sound like no one else, polyrhythmic percussion, and of course Herbie who always brings his Debussy meets Africa tonal palate and rhythms to any project. On this album he expands his Fender Rhodes into an electronic orchestra by manipulating it through an echoplex, often blending with Pat Gleeson's roving ARP 2600.

One cut that caught my ear was Discoveries, on which drummers Eric Gravalt and Billy Hart play in a rapid persistent militaristic fashion that predates the 80s innovations of Ronald Shannon Jackson. Another reccomended piece is album closer Exit 1, which is a slowly unfolding melody sans percussion on which all the musicians blend into an orchestral type sound somewhere between Scriabin and Sun Ra. Overall this album is highly recommended for folks that enjoy Hancock's Sextet and it's many spin-off groups, or anyone who likes progressive psychedelic jazz fusion from the early 70s. It's interesting to note that this is on the Capricorn label, I wonder if Eddie did any opening sets for the Allmans, ha ha.

js (Easy Money) | 4/5 |

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