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Weather Report - 8:30  CD (album) cover

8:30

Weather Report

 

Jazz Rock/Fusion

3.25 | 36 ratings

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Gatot
Special Collaborator
Honorary Collaborator
4 stars This double LP live album represents the cornerstone of Weather Report as well as a new dimension in jazz fusion music that was prevalent in the nineties. I had no idea about the band at time of the release but one of my prog mates told me that the band had a talented bass player Jaco Pastorius, also great keyboard player Joe Zawinul. So, that was the main reason to have the album. Well, I remember vividly that during late seventies or early eighties I also loved some of jazz fusion music with bass players like Stanley Clarke, Ralph Armstrong (contributed to Jean Luc Ponty) or Marcus Miller. So I was curious about Jaco.

This live record not only give you a good exploration of progressive or probably contemporary music using jazz as the tagline or as the foundation, but it also gives you a nuance of dynamic live performance through the recorded crowd applaud that is really dynamic and lively. The opening track "Black Market" (9:47) provides a good example on this. This track is by composition is a masterpiece as it combines great bass- playing that serves two purposes: as beat fillers as well as soloist. Yes, I admire the the talent of Jaco in providing improvised bass playing throughout this dynamic opening track. Wayne Shorter also is a great sax (soprano & tenor) player who has unique style and contributes dynamically throughout this track. Joe Zawinul provides great rhythm section at the background with his unique melody keyboard and at the same time serves as soloist to the track presented here. Peter Erskine drumming reminds me a bit of combination between Steve Gadd and Lenny White. One of key attractions this track offers is the solo sax accompanied with drumming. WOW! What a great performance. Top notch arrangement!

Songs like "Scarlet Woman", "Slang" and "In A Silent Way" provides an exploration of solo work, eg Slang for bass solo, reminiscent of avant-garde music. To fully enjoy these kinds of tracks you may need special time where you can accept this with an open mind. So is the case with me, sometime when I'm not ready with it, I just skip it. "Thanks for The Memory" is a slow jazzy track that may favor those of you who love jazz music. Another great fusion with great bass-playing combined with stunning sax and keyboard is "Birdland" (7:13). Zawinul gives the work of piano as well in between the punctuated beats of the music. Jaco is one of the world's best bass player, I think. He demonstrates how inventive his style through this track as well. He plays the bass like playing guitar melody, sometimes. Really cool!

Overall, this live album is an excellent addition to any prog music collection. If you like bands like Brand X, Return To Forever, or solo albums like Chick Corea, Al Di Meola, etc. you may enjoy this album as well. Keep on proggin' ..!

Gatot | 4/5 |

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