>>55669951 Most great jazz musicians require the listener to think and be engaged in the compositions in which they’re producing. What separates artists like Miles Davis and John Coltrane from Kenny G and The Rippingtons is that greats such as the former chose style over substance, rather than providing simple background music like the latter two produced in their careers. Kamasi Washington unfortunately falls into the latter category. His debut full-length, The Epic, features some of the most lifeless saxophone playing and mundane compositions I’ve ever heard in contemporary jazz music. The former Young Jazz Giants member fails to keep the listener even remotely interested throughout the LP’s excruciating runtime of 173 minutes, which feels more like a try-hard showcase of one’s musical abilities rather than a so-called “epic” which the album’s title promises toward.
>>55670071 What he's trying to say is that jazz is often thought of as back-ground pleasant listening, but it thrives when the artist really engages the listener with something new. So, though this might not be conventionally easy to listen to, it can definitely be enjoyed and appreciated.
>>55670071 He's saying that great jazz musicians introduce original music ideas while mediocre musicians instead just emulate what has already been done. I think that doesn't really answer OP's question though. I think what makes a Jazz album good is difficult to put into words and cant be boiled down to what quality means to the individual. For me, a good album, regardless the genre, feels like... the musician has shaped the music based on their experiences and influences in order to make a sound that is uniquely theirs. They've absorbed what they like about the music, they are aware of the current musical discussion, and using their own experiences in order to make a unique impression on the genre.
tl;dr a good musician pours their essence into their music, a bad one plays what they think people will like
>>55670338 >>55670388 So in the end, whether a jazz album is "good" or "bad" boils down to subjective opinions. But the are the people hating this album because it brings nothing new to the table speaking from a compositional and objective point of view or a subjective point of view?
>>55670507 I haven't had the time to listen through this yet, but from what I've gathered, it does come off as a bit bland. People were expecting a more modern type of music but were served the traditional stew of bop and cool jazz
First of all, explaining the aesthetics of jazz would be simply too long. The genre has been existing for maybe a hundred years. But on the big picture, if you want to know what makes a jazz album good, it's basically the same as any other style. Originality, technical quality, relevance, etc. It's no different from other styles and perpetuating the popular perception that it's something different and mysterious and patrician just damages its reputation and makes it less accessible for people.
Now, most people commenting on this album on /mu/ and talking shit cos it doesn't bring anything new don't know shit about jazz. Most people on /mu/ don't know shit about jazz. Some havelistened to maybe four or five albums and think they're hot shit for being able to drop a couple of names. Most of the times when people argue in jazz threads they cannot even identify the styles. Jazz isn't popular nor commercially succesful.
The problem with this album is that i has become popular for non-musical reasons, like the guy having played with popular artists and shit like that. It has attracted attention from websites and reviewers that typically don't know shit about jazz (like /mu/), and since they don't know shit about jazz they think the album is groundbreaking and revolutionary. Naturally, this annoys people who are legitimately into jazz. It's basically the same thing that happened with Sunbather, with one major difference: The Epic is actually not bad.
So if what you want is validation to listen to it, here you have it. It's not bad. It's no masterpiece but it has some good ideas. Not good enough to listen to the whole thing in one sit though, but it's ok.
Now, if you're really interested in jazz, leave /mu/.
>>55670407 The fact that so many books still name the Kamasi Washington "the greatest or most significant or most influential" jazz album ever only tells you how far jazz album still is from becoming a serious art. Jazz critics have long recognized that the greatest jazz musicians of all times are Duke Ellington and John Coltrane, who were not the most famous or richest or best sellers of their times, let alone of all times. Classical critics rank the highly controversial Beethoven over classical musicians who were highly popular in courts around Europe. Jazz critics are still blinded by commercial success: the Kamasi Washington sold more than anyone else (not true, by the way), therefore they must have been the greatest. Jazz critics grow up listening to a lot of jazz music of the past, classical critics grow up listening to a lot of classical music of the past. Jazz critics are often totally ignorant of the Jazz music of the past, they barely know the best sellers. No wonder they will think that the Kamasi Washington did anything worth of being saved.
I haven't listened to the full album but from the tracks I've heard, the drumming is absolutely phenomenal. Ronald Bruner Jr makes this record (so far). I've heard a couple of cool licks and some sick improving, I absolutely disagree with the use of the choir. I think I'd like what I hear more without them. The band is stacked with talent, so there's great pleasure in listening to them duke it out, but I can see why people wouldn't like the album, although I think they should just shut up and open their ears and at least soak in talents pouring through your speakers
Interplay and quality of musicianship. There's other qualities such as the sheer groove on fusion records which are readily apparent or the spiritual side of things with NY basement works which seem to ooze from such records.
Space is really important too. Think 'Spiritual Unity' - so much conveyed in the air between notes.
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