Some of the most soulful sounds we've ever heard from tenorist James Brandon Lewis
a reworking of themes from the music of Mahalia Jackson into jazz – all at a level that keeps all the spirit of the originals, while unlocking the songs as vehicles for freer improvisation! Given the mix of freedom and spirit here, there's almost a vibe that takes us back to the brilliance of Albert Ayler at the start – served up through the intertwining magic of Lewis
' tenor, the cornet of Kirk Knuffke, cello of Chris Hoffman, bass of William Parker, and drums of Chad Taylor – all tremendous players, but resonating even more strongly in the presence of this project! James
has been getting plenty of attention in recent years, but this could be the album that catapults him into the canon of contemporary jazz – thanks to amazing takes of "Elijah Rock", "Were You There", "Go Down Moses", "Precious Lord", "Deep River", "Wade In The Water", "Swing Low", and "Sparrow". 2CD edition features the full bonus album These Are Soulful Days – recorded by James Brandon Lewis
with the Lutoslowski Quartet.