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John Zorn


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John Zorn Parrhesiastes album cover
3.96 | 5 ratings | 1 reviews | 0% 5 stars

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Studio Album, released in 2023

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. In the Footsteps of Hermes (14:25)
2. The Evental Devalorization of the Perhaps (10:04)
3. Form, Object, and Desire (11:29)

Total Time 35:58

Line-up / Musicians

- John Zorn / compositions, arrangements, conducting

- John Medeski / organ
- Brian Marsella / electric piano
- Matt Hollenberg / electric guitar
- Kenny Grohowski / drums

Releases information

CD Tzadik Records TZ9305 (USA, November 1, 2023)

Thanks to Mirakaze for the addition
and to projeKct for the last updates
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JOHN ZORN Parrhesiastes ratings distribution

(5 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(0%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(80%)
Good, but non-essential (20%)
Collectors/fans only (0%)
Poor. Only for completionists (0%)

JOHN ZORN Parrhesiastes reviews

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

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by memowakeman
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars Review originally posted at

An excellent release!

John Zorn has to be one of the top 5 musicians alive with the biggest discography, he is a prolific mind who never stops or sleeps, and who is always aiming to create and to share. Among his creations, he has tones of albums and projects, and one of them is named Chaos Magick, featuring amazing musicians from the jazz, prog, avant-garde scenes. As far as I know, this line-up had released four records prior to this one, entitled Parrhesiastes, which saw the light the past November 1st.

Sometimes while digging through Zorn's discography might be difficult to find a clear musical path, because he is always changing and exploring, so in a same year you might listen to a classical guitar album, or maybe a funk- oriented record, or why not, a prog rock one. This time, he is giving us a feast of musical genres united in one single record which is divided in three long compositions, so be ready, because this journey will be quite interesting.

The album opens with 'In The Footsteps of Hermes', the first minute is a soft conversation between keys and drums, Kenny Grohowski is a hell of a drummer, by the way. As you can imagine, in long songs there are always changes in time and mood, and here it is not the exception. After some 3 minutes of a jazzy, delicious sound, electric guitar appears and all together explode into a progressive rock feast where the energy of drums, guitar and keyboards is spread. Then after minute five they stop, and begin to create a new passage where mystery appear, even silence. Of course, we can witness a vast amount of textures and nuances during the whole track, in the end we are surrounded by amazing musicians, such as the one and only Jon Medeski, as well as Brian Marsella and Matt Hollenberg.

'The Eventual Valorization of the Perhaps' is a track full of surprises, and it reflects once again the creativity of Zorn and the amazing performing skills of his four bandmates. Its first passage is nice and dreamy, however, after a minute it changes, becomes faster and embraces a jazzy and prog fusion sound that is truly enjoyable to our ears and souls. Then some funky guitar that suddenly morph into a metal-like, and then vanishes to join that soft and delicious jazzy sound keys and drums produce. Important to say that parrhesia is a term used in ancient Greece, which means something like freedom of speech and using the truth for the common being, in spite of personal risks, of course, parrhesiastes is the person who uses it, and I believe this album reflects it somehow, because the musicians are all free to do whatever they want, and all of them tell the truth through their instruments, through music.

Finally, 'Form, Object and Desire', which is a vertiginous track that shares loads of sounds and emotions, it goes from tension to excitement, from doubt to certainty, and in the end all is freedom, so we, in real life, have a mixture of emotions and attitudes, just like the music. I like the guitar work, sometimes soft, even acoustic, but mostly exploding. Organ and electric piano produce countless nuances, and once again, the drums are outstanding. Is it rock, or prog, or jazz? It actually doesn't matter, the journey is quite interesting, one just have to receive its diverse passages with open arms and ears.

This is a great record and one of my most played albums this November, so if you like Zorn and good music in general, this will make your day.

Enjoy it!

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