The biggest volume so far in the Spiritual Jazz series from Jazzman
Records – and maybe the best as well! This fantastic collection looks at the huge legacy of spiritual jazz that flowed from the Japanese scene in the postwar years – sounds that had their initial expression around the same time that the modal jazz of Miles and Coltrane was bursting forth in the US, but which also too so many twists and turns of its own – with some very strong influences along the way from Japanese folk and culture! Much of this music was initially restricted only to release on Japanese labels – and even later, as some of the artists attained fame, the global circulation of their music only happened with more commercial recordings. These tracks are the real deal – and together, they represent a huge legacy of jazz that's as appealing and essential as American work from labels like Impulse or Strata East – or European sounds on Saba/
MPS. Most tracks are quite long, with flowing grooves – and although the players are reaching out, things are never too free or avant – just filled with a searing sense of soul. Jazzman
got strong help on the project from the Deep Jazz Reality series – so the album's got that stamp of approval too – and the whole thing's in one of the most beautiful packages we've ever seen from the label! Titles include "Kumo No Ito" by Mitsuaki Kanno, "East Plants" by Takeo Moriyama, "Positive & Negative" by Minoru Muraoka, "Under Construction" by Koichi Matsukaze, "Ragam Sinthubairavi" by Sadao Watanabe & Charlie Mariano, "Sun In The East" by New Direction For The Arts, "Footprint" by Shungo Sawada, "My Favorite Things" by Tadao Hayashi, "Kikazaru" by Keitaro Miho, "Watarase" by Takeo Moriyama, "Babylonia Wind" by Kiyoshi Sugimoto, "Whispering Weeds" by Yoshio Ikeda, "Kisarazu Zinku" by Toshiko Akioshi, "Sacriment" by Tohru Aizawa, "Spanish Flower" by Tee & Company, and "Scarborough Fair" by Four Units.