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MEMORY SERVES

Material

Jazz Rock/Fusion


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Material Memory Serves album cover
3.15 | 8 ratings | 1 reviews | 12% 5 stars

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Studio Album, released in 1981

Songs / Tracks Listing


1. Memory Serves (5:08)
2. Disappearing (7:11)
3. Upriver (5:25)
4. Metal Test (4:30)
5. Conform To The Rhythm (4:30)
6. Unauthorized (3:50)
7. Square Dance (4:29)
8. Silent Land (3:48)

Total Time: 38:51


Lyrics

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Music tabs (tablatures)

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Line-up / Musicians


- Bill Laswell / 4, 6 and 8 string basses
- Michael Beinhorn - synthesizers, tapes, radio, guitar, drums, voice
- Fred Maher - drums, percussion, guitar (except "Silent Land")
- Sonny Sharrock - guitar (except "Square Dance" and "Silent Land")
- Fred Frith - guitar, violin, xylophone (1,4,5,7)
- Olu Dara - cornet ("Disappearing", "Upriver")
- Henry Threadgill - alto sax ("Disappearing", "Unauthorized", "Square Dance")
- George Lewis - trombone ("Memory Serves", "Square Dance", "Silent Land")
- Billy Bang - violin ("Upriver", "Unauthorized")
- Charles K. Noyes - drums, percussion, bells ("Memory Serves", "Silent Land")


Thanks to Captain Capricorn for the addition
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Buy MATERIAL Memory Serves Music


Memory ServesMemory Serves
Restless Records 1993
Audio CD$59.95
$23.99 (used)
Memory ServesMemory Serves
Import
Ais 2013
Audio CD$24.35
$31.01 (used)
Memory Serves LP (Vinyl Album) French Celluloid 1981Memory Serves LP (Vinyl Album) French Celluloid 1981
Celluloid
Vinyl$9.90 (used)
Memory Serves LP - Elektra Musician - E1 60042Memory Serves LP - Elektra Musician - E1 60042
Elektra Musician
Vinyl$9.99 (used)
Right Now on Ebay (logo)
Material MEMORY SERVES Henry Threadgill Sonny Sharrock Fred Frith Celluloid cd USD $9.99 Buy It Now 7h 29m
MATERIAL-Memory Serves by Material (CD,Oct-1992, Restless Records (USA)METROTONE USD $7.99 [0 bids]
1 day
Material "Memory Serves" Celluloid (FRA) 1981, Laswell, Sharrock, Frith, more... USD $19.95 Buy It Now 1 day
MATERIAL Memory Serves LP 8 Track FRENCH Celluloid 1981 USD $8.57 Buy It Now 2 days
MATERIAL-MEMORY SERVES-JAPAN MINI LP SHM-CD F25 USD $24.50 Buy It Now 2 days
Material - Memory Serves 1982 LP Bill Laswell Sonny Sharrock Fred Frith Downtown USD $10.99 Buy It Now 3 days
Material Memory Serves - LP 12" Celluloid France 1981 USD $9.95 Buy It Now 8 days
Material - Memory Serves LP - Elektra Musician - E1 60042 - Jazz USD $10.79 Buy It Now 12 days
MATERIAL Memory Serves LP Bill Laswell Fred Frith Henry Threadgill Olu Dara USD $9.99 Buy It Now 13 days
MATERIAL MEMORY SERVES - U.S PRESSING - 1981 CELLULOID ILPS 9693 NEAR MINT COND USD $17.18 Buy It Now 14 days
Material "Memory Serves" LP Elektra Musician Celluloid E1-60042 EXCELLENT COND. USD $8.50 Buy It Now 14 days
MATERIAL: Memory Serves [Cardboard Sleeve (mini LP)] [SHM-CD] (Japan) USD $32.05 Buy It Now 14 days
MATERIAL - Memory Serves FRENCH LP FRED FRITH USD $17.99 Buy It Now 16 days
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Material ?- Memory Serves Record LP E1-60042 USD $4.99 Buy It Now 19 days
Material ~ Memory Serves/ UK LP USD $6.49 Buy It Now 20 days
VINYL LP Material - Memory Serves ( Bill Laswell ) Elektra Musician E1-60042 USD $10.99 Buy It Now 21 days
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MATERIAL Memory Serves ratings distribution


3.15
(8 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(12%)
12%
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(38%)
38%
Good, but non-essential (38%)
38%
Collectors/fans only (12%)
12%
Poor. Only for completionists (0%)
0%

MATERIAL Memory Serves reviews


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Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by js (Easy Money)
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator / Retired Admin
3 stars Crawling out of the sludge of NYC's post-punk no wave scene, Material starts to show a lot more sophistication on this, their first full length album after three slightly primitive EPs. Band leader Bill Laswell seems more than eager to start leaving behind his less ambitious band mates as he starts to bring on guests from the 'real' jazz world. Some of the top names from New York's early 80s avant-jazz scene are here including Henry Threadgill, Fred Frith, Sonny Sharrock and Billy Bang. Likewise Laswell doesn't waste any time utilizing his new part-time band mates to take his music into territories he couldn't explore with Material's original three piece lineup. In particular Bill reveals for the first time his deep attachment to the mid-70s music of Miles Davis. For a long time the public had acted as if Miles had dropped off the planet after recording Bitches Brew. Much credit is due to Laswell and other 80s punk/jazzers for recognizing the value of Miles' excursions into avant- psychedelic rock and incorporating his innovations into their music. In particular, the song Dissapearing sounds like an outright Miles tribute with the first part of the song coming from Agharta, and the second half from On the Corner.

Elsewhere throughout this album Material seems to have a lot of fun ripping through a variety of styles in a way that hadn't been heard in the world of jazz fusion in a long while. In the early 80's mainstream fusion had become terribly mundane and safe and was not much more than background music for yuppie diners. NYC bands such as Material and others with avant-garde and post-punk backgrounds were bringing a new life and spunk, as well as an irreverent sense of humor to jazz fusion. A couple songs on here are almost a mix of avant-funk and goofy hillbilly music, something that would have been unheard of in the overly sophisticated world of mainstream fusion post late-70s.

There is some 'material' on here that is less than inspiring. Laswell and his gang still felt obligated to throw on one kind of punky funk number with vocals that are less than professional, as well as a number of noisy experimental cuts that drag on a little too long. In some of the more experimental numbers you can definitely hear Fred Frith's influence via his work with Laswell in Massacre.

This album was a huge breath of fresh air and a bold punky slap in the face of mundane overly slick jazz fusion in the early 80s. I don't know if all that translates these days, but it still has some fun songs, and fun isn't a word you hear associated with jazz fusion too often.

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Send comments to js (Easy Money) (BETA) | Report this review (#228041) | Review Permalink
Posted Thursday, July 23, 2009

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