Matana Roberts: coin coin

This is an amazing new release by montreals constellation records:matana roberts project “coin coin chapter one, Gens de Couleur Libres”.

It starts with an incredible free jazz saxophone tune, then the second song turns from a carla bozulich like disharmonic dark screaming voice in the beginning into a afro jazz 70ies sun ra / pyramids sound with matana roberts spoken words over the horns.

The next songs you hear an ecclectic “bitches brew” of big band sounds, new orleans jazz, folk tunes, swing, free jazz and spoken words, performed by roberts, who is known as a “modern creative” jazz saxophonist and composer (she played as well with godspeed you! black emperor for the yankie uxo lp), recorded live with 30 musicians in montreal´s hotel 2 tango.

If you listen to one of the most amazing track “bid em in..” , a almost acappella gospel, that ends in a fantastic trumpet and horn cacophony, you can imagine, that the songs werde original folk traditionals, arranged in a new way, like it is written in the liner notes. The following lully/bye song is another highlight of a thrilling interpretation of an old folk treasure.

In the end, the songs remind a bit of “land of kush”, sometimes even the “black ox orchestra” comes to mind, and in some moments listening to the the voice, you might think of elisabeth vajagic besides carla bozulich.

And all this goes together so well! So it will be a hell of a job for dj´s to play some songs to the end, but it has always been a challenge with constellation releases….

So thank you for an amazing record, that comes as a double 10″ with cd, poster, 2 inserts and a sil screen jacket in a lovely deluxe edition.

i stand. i suffer.. we soar.
where I end, they begin.
can you hear me?


1. rise
2. pov piti
3. song for eulalie
4. kersaia
5. libation for Mr. Brown: Bid em in…
6. lulla/bye
7. i am
8. how much would you cos

In her own words:

Says Matana:

“COIN COIN is a compositional sound language, that I have been developing since 2006. My initial interest in creating this work came from my childhood fascination with ghosts, spirits, spooks, and the faint traces of what they leave behind. I have a deep interest in old, antique objects of human existence, mostly because of the variety of story that can be created, factual or not, from the possibility of their being. This project is a combination of those interests as well as my delight in musical communication , ritual adornment, and the genealogical 20th century history of Africans in America. In some instances I am using information that I have gleaned from research into my own ancestral history, as inspiration and area of creative consideration. The musical root of much of this work also stems from my continued attraction/repulsion to certain aspects of the American Jazz tradition(s) which I am deeply involved with as an alto saxophonist.”

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