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Herbie Hancock - Dis Is Da Drum CD (album) cover

DIS IS DA DRUM

Herbie Hancock

Jazz Rock/Fusion


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snobb
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR
Honorary Collaborator
3 stars This album is one last Hancock connection with hip-hop/ techno era. Don't expect to find something too much different from his similar works stylistically. But if you're not so jazz purist, you can find some interesting moments there on that album.

First of all, this work is a rare combination of big team of jazz fusion great musicians from 70-s with a big team of techno/hip hop modern musicians. How often you can find Hancock old collaborators Bennie Maupin, Wah Wah Watson,Bill Summers or Santana/RTF percussion star Airto Moreira on hip-hop albums?

And the result is as it should be from that combination: the music is still hip hop/techno ( in moments with acid jazz sound), but with plenty of live jazz instruments and played at the highest technical level.

I don't think this album will be accepted by wide range of jazz or prog lovers, but Hancock fans and everyone searching some interesting and experimental moments in jazz movement, will find some pieces for listening there.

Report this review (#256531)
Posted Thursday, December 17, 2009 | Review Permalink
siLLy puPPy
COLLABORATOR
PSIKE Team
3 stars I cannot fathom that there would be any question that HERBIE HANCOCK has been amongst the crme de le crme of fusionists that the jazz world has ever experienced. Right from the very start of his early career this keyboardist extraordinaire was chomping at the bit to break free from the standard post-bop of the day by incorporating hitherto unheard of techniques into the jazz world such as orchestral accompaniments, inventive new ways of expressing simple chords and ways of incorporating non-jazz elements seamlessly into the genre which eventually entered him access into the musical world of Miles Davis and beyond. In the 70s HANCOCK really took off with this innovation with "Mwandishi" trilogy, the funk jazz of "Headhunters" and the jazz-inflicted electro- funk of albums like "Future Shock" in the 80s. Never being one to rest on his laurels the 90s proved to be yet another period of adventurous experimentation with hip-hop and dance music that after simmering for a decade on the world's dance floors eventually got the label "acid jazz."

With HERBIE's ambition to leave no viable rhythmic stones unturned he headed into the studio with a huge eclectic crew of musicians and producers from both the past and modern day to create one of his most accessible and unusual albums (for him) yet - DIS IS DA DRUM, an album that tackles the 90s hip-hop rhythms, 80s dance floor grooves and jazz history of the past. Of course, HERBIE effortlessly melds all of the above together in the most pleasant of ways creating the perfect jazz meets dance floor album that keeps the dance floor sensibilities intact while fortifying them with his lush keyboard solos, sampling loops, jazz instruments like sax and trumpet while incorporating ethnic African instruments ranging from the djembe, bata, conga dunun, shekere, cabasa all the while keeping it sewn together with the state of art production technology the era had to offer.

While i have to admit that this was not what i expected upon first listen, i remained open minded and found it took a few spins to sink in. While not exactly difficult to absorb upon listen number one, it can be a slap in the face for any jazz purists who are expecting the usual syncopation as usual or the complexities of post-bop or 70s fusion. This is a feel good album that treats the listener to steady dance floor / hip hop beats while letting the jazz-fusion feast play second fiddle while retaining its consistency and danceable rhythms that dominate DIS IS DA DRUM. No fear for those who crave the complexibtilies of jazz. They are there but simply contributing a behind-the-scenes approach where they ooze out now and again to remind you that this is indeed a HERBIE HANCOCK album and his high standards insure us that he has the knack for choosing the best of the best to help fulfill his vision of this unique musical expression.

DIS IS DA DRUM is often described as the perfect party jazz album and that is a statement that i am totally on board with. This is indeed a nice cocktail lounge cornucopia of sounds that works so well as background music but with enough savoir-faire to please jazz musicians who are keen to notice all the details. While this certainly will never rank amongst the top achievements that HERBIE HANCOCK has contributed to the world of music in general, this remains a nice little supplemental feast of sounds for those who wish to delve beyond the classics and into the more eccentric little adventures that HANCOCK has embarked upon. Generally speaking this album starts out very strong but seems to diminish its effect as it progresses due to the fact that the incessant monobeats do steal the thunder of it being a totally outstanding album. Still though, not a bad listen in the least.

3.5 rounded down

Report this review (#1509979)
Posted Sunday, January 10, 2016 | Review Permalink

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