Do not buy this expecting hissy, atonal blip hop – El-Producto is the marquee name here, but this is decisively a late model avant garde jazz record – and a pretty sweet one at that! As with many of the better records in the Blue Series, Matthew Shipp's piano rolls through the center most of the time, loosely keeping the groove going so the crack group can improvise around the edges. Blessedly, the group is more than happy to keep an underlying melodicism at the core – it's always a little ragged, but never too self consciously out. The usual Thirsty Ear subjects are in the mix – Guillermo Brown on drums, Roy Campbell, William Parker on bass, and Steve Swell on trombone. "Produced, arranged, composed and mixed" by El-P – which seems like a pretty heavy workload, but we think he fleshed ideas out with the group at the stage of conception, and let the boys do what they do, largely improvising the results. And you really can feel El-P's intellectual presence in spots, particular the sudden shifts in drum patterns, which kind of mirror the producer's penchant for drivingly broken beats. Regardless of whoever is most responsible, it's a very nice record. It's interesting without trying too damn hard to be weird, and melodic without being too cloying. Tracks include "Please Stay (Yesterday), the epic
"Sunrise Over Bklyn", "Get Your Hand Off My Shoulder, Pig", "Get Modal", "Intrigue In The House Of India", "Something Is Wrong", "When The Moon Was Blue" and more.
(Out of print.)