Blues and Soul Music Magazine

Issue 1084

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Review

Tony Allen: The Source

Tony Allen

8

6.4

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UK release date 07.09.2017

After his successful foray into Art Blakey,Tony Allen, afrobeat originator and groove master carries on an Afrocentric trip through the Blue Note repertoire that include stalwart classic reinterpretations of tunes such as Afro Blue, Afrodisia, Ghana, Niger Mambo, Mr Kenyatta, The Man from Tanganyika and so forth. His beats which I'm going to call 'Jazzrobeat' take a bit of getting used to as he attempt to fit a square peg in a round hole but trust me your ears adjust to the enticing strangeness of it all.

The horn heavy film noire feel give it added dimension too thanks partly to the imperious tones of saxophonist Rémi Sciuto and trumpeter Nicolas Giraud, especially on the opening track 'Moody Boy' which gives way to a jerky odd shuffle hunkered down by taut bass and choppy rhythm guitar A stylistic mission of Mathias Allamane’s double bass and and the strictly syncopated guitar work of Indy Dibongue.

Allen doesn't quite reinvent the wheel but he has a damn good try and the Jazz apple cart is well and truly upset! There's a nod to all the fierce bop and Jazz legends, Miles, Dizzy and the Duke being just some of them.It's an ambitious affair bending your ears into submission.Tony Allen never looks back and is fearless in whatever he tackles, now that's something to be commended - back to the source, but thinking ahead.
Words Emrys Baird

From Jazz Funk & Fusion To Acid Jazz

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