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1 review | 6 people love this record: be the 7th! Here's an exciting late '60s jazz gem back on vinyl for the first time since its original run of 500. 'Underground Railroad' is in fact legendary trumpeter and saxophonist Joe McPhee's first album, in a quartet with Reggie Marks (sax, flute), Tyrone Crabb (bass) and Ernest Bostic (percussion).   On side A is 'Underground Railroad' itself, all clattering drums and a lively interplay between ... »

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Underground Railroad by The Joe McPhee Quartet
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6 people love this record. Be the 7th!
8/10 Mike Staff review, 10 July 2014
Here's an exciting late '60s jazz gem back on vinyl for the first time since its original run of 500. 'Underground Railroad' is in fact legendary trumpeter and saxophonist Joe McPhee's first album, in a quartet with Reggie Marks (sax, flute), Tyrone Crabb (bass) and Ernest Bostic (percussion).   On side A is 'Underground Railroad' itself, all clattering drums and a lively interplay between McPhee and Marks on the saxes, building from sensitive melodic shapes to shrill emotional squiggles with gleeful abandon. Flip it and there are two slightly shorter and more downbeat numbers, 'Harriet' and 'Message From Denmark'. The former is a lilting spiritual jazz number with some bowed bass and sweet flute work from Marks, the latter starting sparse with solo trumpet and then some solo double bass before the full band comes in for a bombastic freak-out that brings us back to the chaotic vibes of side A. Historic and enjoyable free jazz action from a man who went on to establish himself as one of the greats.

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