Chick Corea: Again And Again (The Joburg Sessions) (1983)

Kronomyth 37.0: SWIRLED TOUR. This is a studio recording of material that Chick and his current five-piece band were playing on tour, some of it written as far back as 1979 but captured here for the first time. Recorded in a single day in South Africa (thus the parenthetical addendum), Again And Again is split down the middle between warm Latin jazz (side one) and noisier, funkier fare (side two). Steve Kujala also splits his time between the flute and the sax, and something about the flute makes the first side quieter, particularly in the rhythms from Tom Brechtlein, Don Alias and Carlos Benavent. This has historically never been a favorite album of mine, but it seems I’ve softened with age and thoroughly enjoyed both halves this time. The first side is a good example of Corea the composer, particularly the opening “Quintet #3,” a piece that had originally been scored for a trio (according to the liner notes). It’s one of those warm musical vistas bustling with good ideas and well synchronized movements. The two tracks that follow are also enjoyable and representative of this “quiet period” in Corea’s work before the bombast of the Elektric/Akoustic Band. On side two, “Diddle Diddle” has always caught my ear for its Lounge Lizards edginess (once a punk, always a punk), though the chemistry between Corea and Kujala (here on soprano sax) is surprisingly poor. Again And Again isn’t a fusion concept album and it doesn’t quite fit into Corea’s early 80s classical phase. It’s two sides of a multi-faceted artist captured at a moment in time with one of his less ostentatious outfits, a pair of pleasant excursions to interesting places.

Original LP Version
A1. Quintet #3 (9:24)
A2. Waltze (7:56)
A3. Again And Again (4:19)
B1. 1-2-1234 (4:06)
B2. Diddle Diddle (8:15)
B3. Twang (11:01)

All compositions written by Chick Corea.

The Players
Chick Corea (Fender Rhodes, Minimoog, Hohner Duo, OB-Xa, Yamaha GS-1, Prime Time digital delay, cowbell and Chinese cymbal), Don Alias (percussion), Carlos Benavent (electric bass), Tom Brechtlein (drums), Steve Kujala (flutes, soprano sax, tenor sax). Produced by Chick Corea.

The Pictures
Front cover painting by Milton Avery. Album design by Norm Ung and Kristen Kasell Nikosey. Back cover photography by Norman Seeff.

The Plastic
Released on elpee in 1983 in the US (Elektra Musician, 60167-1) and Japan (Warner/Pioneer, P-11253); reached #15 on the US Jazz charts. Re-released on CD on March 9, 1989 in the US (Elektra, 60167).

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