Criticizing someones music is like criticizing how someone raises their kids… you have to know the intention of the recording to do this. You cannot come to a sound conclusion if you do not know the facts and, by a choice of their own, reviewers are not privy to that information… especially now. When an incredible musician puts out a recording, sacrifices the mix of the album to spend the money in other areas, you wouldn't know the details of that unless you ask. Sadly, critics are very discredited in jazz. Equally disappointing is the many musicians that believe them(critics) to be a "necessary evil" because of their ability to "make or break" an album. Sometimes musicians think it's the only way to get your CD publicized for a low budget project. The discredit comes in because critics have no connection with the musicians. They treat them like animals in a zoo…. or the way they write about indigenous people in Encyclopedias. No research, time in the field, conversations or phone calls, no questions, and no idea on the process to create a project (especially when it comes to independent music.) Don't take my word for it… you only have to ask ANY jazz musician about what I said... Do some research because we do want you involved, but not if you are ignorant about the subject you are writing about… call up the artist and find out whats up and I guarantee your "review" will be respected. Until then, your reviews will never be taken seriously by the jazz community and definitely by me. - Zaccai Curtis
(REVIEW) Inventions and Dimensions (1963)
Five tunes, all by Hancock, played by an unusual quartet: Hancock, Paul Chambers on bass, and both Willie Bobo and Osvaldo "Chihuahua" Martínez on Latin percussion. This forshadows the preoccupation with rhythm that dominates his fusion work, but that's about all I can say for it. Nearly all the music was made up on the spot - the bossa nova-y "Mimosa" did have a chord structure preplanned - and instead of being an adventurous, spirited group exploration, it just sounds scattershot and disorganized. Hancock comes up with some startling runs ("A Jump Ahead"), but not many; the percussionists either stay way in the background or solo aimlessly; and Chambers seems lost, repeating simple figures endlessly ("Succotash"). "Triangle" is the closest thing to traditional jazz here, and gets the best performances all around - otherwise, there's nothing much of lasting value. (DBW) warr.org
This is why I'm looking for musicians to advocate for each others music… Truth Revolution Recording Collective is about to change all that…. Russ Musto, thanks for doing this… you started a powerful vibration… and thanks to all of you who have already been on to and doing this!