Sunday, November 4, 2012


by The Souljazz Orchestra

The Souljazz Orchestra's last album, Rising Sun, was a beautiful exploration of the two schools of music that make up the group's name, with a decidedly Ethiopian influence to it.  That album was firmly instrumental, and a move away from the more Fela Kuti-inspired afrobeat of their earlier work.

Now, with Solidarity, their new album, the band has evolved once again, while staying close to their roots.  They've constructed ten wonderful tracks which range from afrobeat to Caribbean and Brazilian inspired songs.  They've also invited a number of guests to join them, encompassing a number of different traditions.

Included on this album are artists from (or with parents from) Sénégal, Brazil, Jamaica, as well as Canadians steeped in North American jazz, soul, and Quebecois music.  In many ways, this band from Ottawa has put together a multi-lingual album which reflects the diversity and beauty of Canadian society.  It's all about Solidarity.

This is a fun album to listen to.  The band has a number of crowd-pleasing tracks, full of high energy, but also some that are more introspective and beautiful.  It's good stuff.

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