Mushroom - Joint Happening
Lead by drummer Pat Thomas, the collective known as Mushroom have been around now for ten years, exploring unashamedly the sounds that make the best psychedelic, funky and free jazz as much gateways to the spiritual as they are fearless styles of music. As if to celebrate their anniversary in grand style, Mushroom have teamed up with legendary trumpeter Eddie Gale for “Joint Happening,” a set of seven burning tracks that sum up where the band has been, with a major help from one of the originators of their approach to sound.
Gale has played and recorded with Cecil Taylor and Sun Ra, and his own work has explored spirit-jazz and improv, while incorporating gospel and soul charts to his compositions. His sometimes sparse, sometimes gigantic wail is often the entry point into these funky, trippy drones, with Mushroom, as if they had prepared their entire career for this moment, follow a master and show they can hang with their own chops. The best moments here are truly transcendent, such as the middle section of the eighteen minute
"I Was Torn Down At The Dance Place--Shaved Head At The Organ," where the band and Gale swap majestic, haunting visions. There are other moments on this release, such as during “Peace” or “Selling Oakland By the Pound,” where you might be forgiven for thinking that you are listening to some outtakes from an Electric-era Miles record.
Two of Gale’s compositions, “Our Love,” and “The Spirit,” close the set on notes of hope and quiet power. “Joint Happening” takes you on several trips, all worth it and all groovy in the best sense of the word.
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