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Album Review

If acid jazz was a hip-hop/funk fusion mediated by the language of jazz, Spaceways make their play from the outer edges of improvisational territory, drawing on Sun Ra, Cecil Taylor, and the Art Ensemble of Chicago for their inspiration. The group's debut, Trad, is free-jazz/trip-hop of a dense, sophisticated sort, and one which makes certain demands of the listener, the least of which is the abandonment of the hard-and-fast categories that tend to surround the sort of warped genre extrapolation presented here.


Formed: 1989 in Bristol, England

Genre: Alternative

Years Active: '90s

Hip-hop/jazz fusioners Spaceways record for the Bristol-based Cup of Tea label, whose releases by Grantby, Red, Monk & Canatella, and Purple Penguin combined with those of higher-profile Bristolean acts such as Massive Attack and Portishead in making the city a hotspot of sorts for smoky, dub- and jazz-inflected head music. Championing a groove-based, live-sounding integration of funky, sequenced beats and live percussion with lots of brass, guitars, standup bass, and other instrumental affects not...
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Trad, Spaceways
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