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Sun Ra: Space Is the Place

Album Reviews:

Mojo (Publisher) (p.53) - Ranked #2 in Mojo's "The 50 Most Out There Albums Of All Time" - "[A] feast of astro-jazz weirdness."

Album Notes

Sun Ra And His Astro Intergalactic Infinity Arkestra: Sun Ra (piano, Farfisa organ); John Gilmore (tenor saxophone, vocals); Pat Patrick (electric bass, baritone saxophone, vocals); Danny Thompson (baritone saxophone, flute, vocals); Akh Tal Ebah (trumpet, flugelhorn, vocals); Marshall Allen (alto saxophone, flute); Danny Davis (alto saxophone, flute); Kwame Hadi (trumpet); Eloe Emoe (bass clarinet, flute); Lex Humphries (drums); Atakatun, Odun (percussion).

Space Ethnic Voices: June Tyson, Ruth Wright, Cheryl Banks, Judith Holton (background vocals).

Producers: Alton Abraham, Ed Michel.

Reissue producer: Ed Michel.

Recorded at Streeterville Recording Studio, Chicago, Illinois on October 19 & 20, 1972. Originally released on Blue Thumb Records (BTS-41). Includes liner notes by Sun Ra.

Space Is the Place provides an excellent introduction to Sun Ra's vast and free-form jazz catalog. Typical of many Sun Ra recordings, the program is varied; earthbound songs, like the swing number "Images" and Egyptian exotica piece "Discipline," fit right in with more space-age cuts, like the tumultuous "Sea of Sounds" and the humorous "Rocket Number Nine." Sun Ra fuses many of these styles on the sprawling title cut, as interlocking harmonies, African percussion, manic synthesizer lines, and joyous ensemble blowing all jell into some sort of church revival of the cosmos. Throughout the recording, Sun Ra displays his typically wide-ranging talents on space organ and piano, reed players John Gilmore and Marshall Allen contribute incisive and intense solos, and June Tyson masterfully leads the Space Ethnic Voices on dreamy vocal flights. This is a fine recording and a must for Sun Ra fans. ~ Stephen Cook


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