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Weather Report - Weather Report (1982) CD (album) cover

WEATHER REPORT (1982)

Weather Report

 

Jazz Rock/Fusion

3.08 | 47 ratings

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Zac M
Special Collaborator
Honorary Collaborator
3 stars This was my first Weather Report purchase (just a couple of weeks ago actually), although I have heard some of their material in the past. Weather Report are most famous for their outstanding musicianship and arranging. The lineup on this album is probably the one Weather Report is most famous for. Most people would no what to expect when they see Wayne Shorter, Jaco Pastorious, Joe Zawinul, et al. It's obvious that this album is overflowing with some of the most famous names in modern American jazz and here they put together a solid effort.

The sound on this album is definitely different compared to their 70s material. Zawinul composes most of the tracks, so Pastorious doesn't really get a say in some of the albums material. The first track, "Volcano for Hire," is probably the best track on the album. It's full of freshness and very lively with excellent keyboard and saxophone arrangement in particular. After the uptempo funkiness of the first track, "Current Affairs" slows things down a little. Shorter's sax on this track is so smooth and laid back; it's a really great piece.

Next comes the "epic" of the album, a suite of music entitled "N.Y.C." Part One starts out with bustling sounds that mimic New York City. This bridges into the uptempo part, which is pretty much lively, uptempo straight-forward jazz-rock full of interesting keyboards and a solid bass line by Jaco. Part Two starts out a little calmer, but ends up like the previous part. Jaco's bass solo is a highlight of this track. Part Three continues where Two left off, still keeping the steady jazz-rock feel, only this time Shorter has a magnificent solo.

I find Side Two to not hold up as well as Side One, although it's still pretty good. "Dara Factor One" features a great keyboard/sax arrangement, keeping up with the same style as previous pieces. Zawinul and Shorter lead the way again on "When It Was Now," performed in an obvious smooth jazz style. "Speechless" is another slower track. The tempo stays very steady, while Zawinul plays at his various keyboards and creates some pretty interesting effects. The last track is "Dara Part Two," a continuation of Part One. Again, it's very up beat and keeps you interested. Zawinul and Shorter do their thing, while the rest of the band keep a steady tempo.

This album has made me much more interested in collecting more of the Weather Report discography. People may say that the band was "running out of steam," but they were at least trying too keep things fresh and lively with interesting arrangements. I think any fan of American fusion (not to mention Weather Report fans) will most likely be interested in hearing this album. It's not a masterpiece by any means, but is still a good, sold album. Three stars.

Zac M | 3/5 |

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