Remember that first time you heard The Mahavishnu Orchestra, or perhaps the Tony Williams Lifetime? That jarring fusion of complex jazz and raging, almost violent rock? Well, Five Times Surprise is a record that will take you back to those early jazz-fusion days, recorded by a new supergroup of hot players that features:
Henry Kaiser: six-string guitar (Wadada Leo Smith, David Lindley)
Anthony Pirog: six-string guitar (The Messthetics, The Spellcasters)
Tracy Silverman: six-string electric violin (Turtle String Quartet)
Jeff Sipe: drums (Shawn Lane/Jonas Hellborg, Aquarium Rescue Unit)
Andy West: six-string bass (ex-Dixie Dregs)
This new Cuneiform Records release busts out of the gate with the fusion monster "Haboob", 10+ minutes of fiery, furious music featuring sizzling guitar & violin solos plus killer rhythms that will instantly bring to mind classic Mahavishnu Orchestra, Lifetime, Eleventh House, and Brand X with its take no prisoners approach and daring soloing. "Slicer" also goes for the jugular with some savage explorations from Kaiser, Pirog, and Silverman, while the group give a nod to John McLaughlin's classic fusion act with their cover of "You Know You Know", superbly done I might add. Other tracks to look out for here include the jagged "Torch Shadows" and the jaw dropping "Maneki Neko", but the real surprise is the 40+ minute jam "Twilight of the Space Gods", which is listed as a bonus track. That's some bonus track!!! This one is basically an epic improvisation, allowing for plenty of solos from the entire band and lots of crazy sounds.
Five Times Surprise is indeed a great surprise here in 2019, an album from a five-headed fusion monster that delivers on every level. Do not miss this one!!
You Know You Know 07:02
My Brothers How's 01:58
24 Liars 08:46
A Realm Of Paradise 04:13
Why Starfish Why 03:26
Torch Shadows 08:10
Maneki Neko 12:52
Twilight Of The Space Gods [bonus track] 40:21