When my musical tastes changed nearly 20 years ago, it was a drastic shift. This track, and the album it's from, was definitely significant in this change. It was a completely new sound for me and even now, all this time later, I still love it. Don Ellis was a trumpet player and band leader. He was renowned for composing and arranging tunes in really unusual time signatures (this track, in 7/8, is an example). In fact, it's said that the only song he played in 4/4 was Take Five (a little joke for the musos out there ;)...). It was 1968 that this was recorded, so at the peak of experimentation Western/Eastern music fusion. This track starts off with sitar providing the rhythm which is then picked up by the rhythm section. Ellis comes in with his personally created quarter-tone trumpet. For some, the sound is dissonant and unpleasant. Stick with it - you get used to it. From then on in, it's an energy roller-coaster, as hip as it is cool. After numerous solos, the track subsides and seems to end as the lone sitar returns. But then it picks up the riff again and *BAM* - back into the track with even more energy than before. I'm spent!
from Electric Bath (CBS SBP 233513), available on CD (Legacy)
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tracks by The Don Ellis Orchestra