March 04, 2017

David Sancious and Tone - Dance of the Age of Enlightenment (1977, LP, Usa)

This is an album that I never thought that I would have an opportunity to hear much less own. This 1977 release was pulled from the shelves the day it hit the stores due to legal and contractual issues between his first label, Epic, and his subsequent label, Arista. I can only imagine how unbelievably pissed off David must have been at the time of this ordeal for it's quite evident that this recording was his true labour of love and the product of an ideal artistic vision that he obviously cultivated for a lengthy peroid of time.
The musicianship on this album is absolutely extraordinary and is another prime example that musical possibilities are fathomless. This is a "composition" in every sense of the word consisting of several movements and even a finale. The overall sound is in the same vein as prog bands like Genesis and Yes and fusion bands like Return to Forever and Passport but totally unique nonetheless. The pieces range from ethereal soudscapes and soothing acoustic piano and guitar to frenetic progressive rock intensity bursting at the seams with cosmic synths and bass and percussion that would fit right in with a speed-metal outfit. David's keyboard and guitar playing is awe-inspiring as usual and Earnest Carter proves that he is in the same tier as percussion virtuosos Lenny White and Billy Cobham playing with an astonishingly amazing speed and clarity. Gerald Carbouy also plays his bass with a speed and intensity that very few can begin to emulate. I'm so grateful that I was able to find a limited edition 2004 Japanese issue of this masterpiece on line.