Published Oct 14, 2014The music here marks a son's rite of passage, a man's loss of his mother and a musician's function in a ritual celebration and passage clearing from one world to the next. Or, to quote Mazurek himself, "This is a modern spiritual." A month after the untimely death from cancer of his mother, Rob Mazurek entered a Sao Paulo studio to record the music that would "sonically clear a path for my mother into the unknown to ensure her safe journey to the next."
The music has echoes upon echoes: everything from the layered Electric Ladyland throwdowns of Jimi Hendrix to the African trance of the Art Ensemble of Chicago and the testifying chant of Albert Ayler and the Black Church. Mazurek has obviously never left his American roots far behind, even as he simmered in Sao Paulo with a Brazilian band. It's big, aggressive, joyous, frightening work, tied together with raucous electronics and head-banging grooves. (Cuneiform)