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Weather Report

Jazz Rock/Fusion

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Weather Report Domino Theory album cover
3.29 | 64 ratings | 4 reviews | 10% 5 stars

Good, but non-essential

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Studio Album, released in 1984

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Can It Be Done (3:58)
2. Db Waltz (11:10)
3. The Peasant (8:13)
4. Predator (5:21)
5. Blue Sound Note 3 (5:59)
6. Swamp Cabbage (5:19)
7. Domino Theory (4:47)

Total Time 44:47

Line-up / Musicians

- Joe Zawinul / keyboards, synths, producer
- Wayne Shorter / soprano & tenor saxophones
- Victor Bailey / bass
- Omar Hakim / drums
- José Rossy / percussion

- Carl Anderson / vocals (1)

Releases information

Artwork: Tony Lane & Nancy Donald

LP Columbia ‎- FC 39147 (1984, US)

CD Columbia ‎- CK 39147 (1984, US)
CD Columbia ‎- 5126882 (2003, France)
CD Music On CD ‎- MOCCD 13241 (2015, Europe)

Thanks to ProgLucky for the addition
and to Quinino for the last updates
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WEATHER REPORT Domino Theory ratings distribution

(64 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(10%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(30%)
Good, but non-essential (48%)
Collectors/fans only (13%)
Poor. Only for completionists (0%)

WEATHER REPORT Domino Theory reviews

Showing all collaborators reviews and last reviews preview | Show all reviews/ratings

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by Nightfly
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
3 stars Domino Theory continues in the same vein of slick Jazz/Fusion as Weather Report's previous album, Procession. The line up remains the same and fans of Procession will find much to enjoy here too.

Can it be done opens the album with an atmospheric Keyboard dominated start before turning into a smooth Jazz Vocal track featuring guest Vocalist Carl Anderson. Pleasant enough it is but much better is Db Waltz which follows. Driven along by Omar Hakim's superb Drumming this track really kicks ass. Stabby Keyboard parts, smooth Bass and rich Saxophone with a few scat style Vocals thrown in for good measure. The band take it down a couple times before exploding again with full force, this really is an excellent piece that'll have you hitting the replay button.

The Peasant brings things down somewhat being much more subdued having an almost Indian vibe to it. It's an atmospheric piece which although quite enjoyable outstays its welcome a little at just over eight minutes long.

Predator opens side 2 of the original vinyl version with its offbeat rhythmic structure though its still played in 4/4. Omar Hakims Drumming shines again, embelished by Jose' Rossy on Percussion though a tip of the hat also goes to Joe Zawinul for his interesting Keyboard textures, Victor Bailey for some nice Fretless Bass work and Wayne Shorter for his never less than excellent Sax playing.

Blue Sound Note 3 starts off atmospherically before a build only to be taken right down again in the mid section full of Zawinul's interesting keyboard textures. Swamp Cabbage is more upbeat with its insistant 6/8 rhythm and one of my favourite tracks on the album. The title track, Domino Theory closes and features some excellent Bass from Bailey underscored by Hakim's once again excellent Drumming, mainly Hi-hat and Bass Drum at the start building with a few well placed snare beats and heavy use of China cymbal later, Shorter's Sax not really making it's prescence felt until later and Zawinul also taking a back seat providing sympathetic keyboard textures.

So if you enjoyed previous album Procession then you may want to add this to your collection. Though Domino Theory is a very good album it doesn't quite match its predecessor for quality. Another killer track like Db Waltz might have just lifted it to be its equal but still worthy of 3 ― stars.

Review by Kazuhiro
3 stars Their music characters at this time might have been in indeed one turning point as an activity of the band that faced it in the 80's. Of course, there might have been a part that appeared as a flow having a presentiment of the future of the band as some were remarkable, too.

The content in "8:30" was an album that had to be considered exactly as their compilations. And, there might have been a part in which it had begun to grope for the new front in the situation in which they gradually rushed into in the 80's, too. The base of the band in Pastorius-Erskine-Thomas was the best for the part where the establishment to express the music character at this time and the content enhanced most were produced. Of course, it will be divided in opinion by the musician and the album related to the band for the fan and the listener.

Generally, there might certainly have been a situation in which the band after the 80's had tried to push the frontiers with member's replacement as a made opinion. And, it is guessed that there was a part where the intention of Joe Zawinul was reflected as a result, too of course. And, the band gradually rushes into by member's replacements other than Joe Zawinul and Wayne Shorter at the time of the revolution.

The part where development and the revolution were able to be perceived was already in "8:30" as a situation of the band in the above-mentioned description. The band revolutionizes, establishes to some degree, and concludes successfully there as a flow in "Weather Report 82". The band's giving the listener the impression that the flavor of Joe Zawinul gradually rules the whole of the band at the same time as advancing further by replacing the rhythm section here results.

"Procession" that had been announced in 1983 was a content that the band was able to catch the part where a new stage had been developed in all aspects by putting various meanings. Of course, the contribution of line-up in each album that touches in the above- mentioned part will divide by fan and listener's opinions. And, if the history by the entire activity of the band is considered, it is clear that the directionality of the rhythm section by the part, Victor Bailey, and Omar Hakim where the music character by Joe Zawinul is remarkably expressed remarkably expressed the music character of the band at this time.

The content of "Procession" might have been collected to the album of course indeed obediently as an impression that the part that the band had revolutionized in the 80's is emphasized. The rhythm section of Bailey-Hakim established in the meaning that attempts some greeting and the differentiation might have some differences compared with the work in the 70's. It is not likely to be able to listen to a free part and a free extension in the performance of Pastorius-Erskine so much in the work in the 80's. However, the performance of Bailey-Hakim can receive a hard, straight impression. Part where the part was clearly given to listener by "Procession". And, this route continued as a band until the band faced the end. Or, if the part where the band was gradually reflected by the music character of Joe Zawinul was emphasized, the part where the section of Bailey-Hakim had already played the role as the studio musician might have been considered. There might have been a sense of relief to which the situation in which the musician to express the music character of the part and the band that gradually revolutionized it in the flow that the band faced in the 80's anyway at this time was gathered and done was involved enough for the band.

This album collects the tune that spent between 1983 and 1984 and was recorded. The recording done in California and Japan includes the sound source of live. Because a sense of relief in "Procession" and some tension soften further by this album, room will be felt by me. It made remarks on Omar Hakim in the activity of the band at this time. They do a little rehearsal and the discussion and the talk are said doing the greater part of parts. It is said that it was exactly surprised at Omar Hakim that knows the directionality of the band that adopts the method of the live succession as the extension of the conversation very much. The method and the proof that they had adopted as a live band will have been exactly situations based on the method of Joe Zawinul. Conversation by music done by live by extension of conversation. It will have been one method of the flow to this band always. It is likely to be able to think as an album with which room and the sense of relief overflow.

"Can It Be Done" might receive a different a little more impression in their tunes. They had them appoint various singers by the tune in the past. And, the song of Carl Anderson has been appointed in this tune. The sound of the keyboard that Joe Zawinul performs gives Kon a very futuristic impression. However, the part of a moving melody and the song has been approved as a ballade of fine quality. Melody with anacatesthesia. Or, the composition in which the part of the decoration is almost excluded shows that their music characters have flexibility.

"D-Flat Waltz" is Jazz-Rock where their flavors were expressed enough. Maintenance of overwhelming technology and dash feeling that rhythm section does. The sound with the diversity that the keyboard does contributes to this tune very much. The sound of Sax processed by the effect is suitable for the flavor of the tune, too. Part of intermittent Verse. Chorus part in scat. And, the flavor of the keyboard that develops during the tune gives the listener complete Weather Report. Especially, Solo of the keyboard has the overwhelming might.

The music character of Joe Zawinul and power of expression appear remarkably in "The Peasant". Flavor of ethnical that extends overall. The member expands the impression of the tune in union. Part of decoration of voice with Vocoder. Composition and melody that gives ..multinational.. impression. The individuality of Joe Zawinul is exactly demonstrated. The sound of diversity to get on the length and the repeated steady rhythm might be development of the music character that they did.

"Predator" is a tune by Wayne Shorter. It is a tune that the element of Funk is united in the calypso and the flavor of Latin. Part of Sax that develops complex melody. There might not be so many impressions of the decided theme. The parts of a few sessions are taken and the tune progresses. A bright melody that appears in the latter half of the tune might decided the impression of the tune.

As for "Blue Sound - Note 3", the theme of Sax that performs a fantastic melody is impressive. It is likely to be able to catch as a city ballade. It might have the composition in which "3 Views Of A Secret" is recollected as an impression of this tune. The part of "Quietness" and "Movement" is used properly well.

The development of a complex melody of "Swamp Cabbage" is impressive. Each member constructs diversity in the melody to get on the rhythm of six rhythms having it. Progress of Chord with line and tension of Bass with extension. It is a tune that gives a mysterious impression. However, an original sensibility and the melody of the band are blocked enough in this tune.

In "Domino Theory", the sequence of the rhythm that Joe Zawinul basically does is a subject. Joe Zawinul describes this tune, "It is a drum that makes the melody". Solo of Bass to get on the rhythm of the sequence has fast Passage. The collective impression might be a very inorganic impression. The experiment on Joe Zawinul to emphasize the rhythm section might be included.

There is exactly an impression to which the performance of the band was refined further by member's replacement at this time. And, the impression as the band of Joe Zawinul might strengthen overall at the same time as a result as for the emphasis of the music character of fixation and Joe Zawinul of the rhythm section at this time.

Review by Tom Ozric
4 stars Re-visiting my old Weather Report LP's in recent weeks has been a refreshing experience. Things I thought were great aren't that spectacular anymore, and things I thought weren't that great turned out to be impressive. Yeah, it has been a few years since I've spun them. 'Tale Spinnin' will always get the highest recommendation from me though. 'Domino Theory' from 1984 is an album I thought was mediocre at best, but I've come to really appreciate it, now even more than the previous 'Procession'. Wayne Shorter's saxes haven't sounded so full and robust previously as they do here. Zawinul's keyboard sounds are unique and he really lets loose more often here, actually, this is quite a synth dominated WR album. Victor Bailey is the bassist at this stage, and I definately prefer his style and sound to Jaco Pastorius' - thick, rolling and heavy. Omar Hakim is on drums, and he too has a great, tight sound which just adds enjoyment to this release. Jose Rossy is the ever-important percussionist, adding the colourful, exotic textures this music so deserves. Opening the album with Willy Tee's 'Can It Be Done', a short vocal track (sung by Carl Anderson in jazz-crooner fashion) jolted me years ago, but the lyrics are meaningful, and Zawinul plays some deliberately obscure synth lines, again, something different from the guys. At 11+ minutes, 'Db Waltz' is a complex arrangement which cooks, every member of the band giving a top performance, Zawinul adding some vocalising and virtuosic synth solos, ever so brief, yet outstanding. This is practically a swingin', 'big- band' sounding piece with excellent dynamics and surely a highlight in their vast discography. 'The Peasant' is an 8min slow burner, heavy with percussion and a steady beat, sparse bass lines and lots of synths. Trance-jazz anyone ?? Flipside we get Shorter's 'Predator', a funky tune featuring some bass slapping from Bailey. 'Blue Sound - Note 3' is more experimental, builds into a full-sounding jazzy part, and tapers off. Another Shorter tune, 'Swamp Cabbage' (cool title) has a very interesting drum pattern from Hakim and Eastern styled synth motifs from Zawinul, another great track. 'Domino Theory' features busy percussive work and some truly insane bass-licks (very difficult to tell, it could be synth from Zawinul - Jaco's solo on 'Punk Jazz' (off their 1978 album Mr Gone) doesn't even come close... This one gets 4 stars from me.
Review by UMUR
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
3 stars "Domino Theory" is the 12th full-length studio album by US jazz/fusion act Weather Report. The album was released through Columbia Records in February 1984. Itīs the successor to "Procession" from 1983 and features the same quintet lineup who recorded the predecessor.

"Procession" was the first Weather Report to more prominently feature vocals and lyrics, although the band had made brief experiments with vocals on earlier releases too. The trend to include vocals continues on "Domino Theory", which opens with the stunning "Can It Be Done" (sung by Carl Anderson), but Weather Report have not abandoned their jazz/fusion instrumental work, which is as impressive as ever on the 11:10 minutes long "Db Waltz", which follows. That track also features brief moments with vocals, but no lyrics. We īre treated to funky and jazzy rhythms and bass work, Wayne Shorterīs exciting saxophone playing, and Joe Zawinulīs always intriguing and creative use of keyboards/synths.

While some of the material are quite brilliant, there are other times when I donīt think Weather Report quite hits the mark. "The Peasant" is for example unnecessarily long and becomes a little tedious with its ambient sound, and few climaxes. "Predator" features a lot of nice rhythmic playing, but itīs also a track which isnīt really leading to anywhere. The same can unfortunately be said about "Blue Sound Note 3", which is a relatively experimental affair, but again lacking direction and catchiness, until about 5 minutes in, when some melancholic saxophone melodies come in to save the day. "Swamp Cabbage" is decent enough, but not exactly a mind blowing track. I like the dark and haunting atmosphere of the title track, but itīs another ambient track, and "Domino Theory" could definitely have been a little more interesting with fewer ambient moments.

"Domino Theory" features a detailed, organic, and well sounding production. Some people may not appreciate some of the 80s synths choices, but Zawinul is a master of his craft, and anything he touches is at least interesting to listen to. Upon conclusion "Domino Theory" isnīt the greatest release by Weather Report. It starts out strong with "Can It Be Done" and "Db Waltz", which to my ears are the two best quality tracks on the album, but from then on the highlights are few and far between. A 3 star (60%) rating is warranted.

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