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Psychicemotus

Yusef Lateef

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Album Review

Psychicemotus was released in 1965 and features Yusef Lateef on various flutes and tenor saxophone, Georges Arvanitas on piano, bassist Reggie Workman, and drummer James Black. And while the Coltrane era of modal and free jazz was in full swing, Lateef always followed his own muse, and continued looking forward while looking back to ancient musics. His use of bamboo and Chinese wood flutes on the title track and "Bamboo Flute Blues" added not only dimension and texture, but rhythmic invention to standard jazz forms. Yet his readings of Jerome Kern's and Oscar Hammerstein's "Why Do I Love You," on which he plays tenor, swings elegantly while incorporating both hard bop and angular outside playing in his solo. Arvanitas is a near perfect foil for Lateef in that while he's not as technically flashy as Barry Harris, he is a deeply sympathetic player who uses accents and ostinati as grounding points, and prefigures rhythmic changes rather than just comping. The beautiful reading of Erik Satie's "First Gymnopedie" on which Lateef plays flute is an utterly beautiful, restrained, and adventurous reading, and is allowed to resonate rhythmically with hand-percussion fills by Black. While not Lateef's finest recording for Impulse (Live at Pep's takes the cake), it certainly is a worthy and memorable one.

Customer Reviews

one of my favorite albums

inventive, fun, beautiful

Jumbled Set

Being a fan of Lateef's quirky nature, I was excited to hear this album, but was sadly let down a little bit. It sounds like he took 25 songs from 4 albums and mixed them up randomly and put them back into 4 albums, and this is one of the 4 that was produced. From song to song, there is no fluidity because instruments are switched around so much and moods are all over the place. This album reminds me of a kid who wanted to show how many different instruments he can play without any accounting for the listeners enjoyment.

Fabulous

An inviting energy that feeds the soul and taps the inner core --- music medicine

Biography

Born: October 9, 1920 in Chatanooga, TN

Genre: Jazz

Years Active: '40s, '50s, '60s, '70s, '80s, '90s, '00s, '10s

Yusef Lateef long had an inquisitive spirit and he was never just a bop or hard bop soloist. Lateef, who did not care much for the term "jazz," consistently created music that stretched (and even broke through) boundaries. A superior tenor saxophonist with a soulful sound and impressive technique, by the 1950s Lateef was one of the top flutists around. He also developed into the best jazz soloist to date on oboe, was an occasional bassoonist, and introduced such instruments as the argol (a double...
Full Bio
Psychicemotus, Yusef Lateef
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  • $4.99
  • Genres: Jazz, Music
  • Released: 1965

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