Friday, August 8, 2014

Gato Barbieri - Fenix (1971)

An excellent, high-energy record of percussion-heavy, groove-based, vaguely Latin jazz led by Argentinian tenor saxophonist Gato Barbieri. His playing here is phenomenal -- informed by both the forceful, improvisational melodicism of hard bop and the shrieking abandon of free jazz -- and he's backed up by a stellar cast of musicians, including bassist Ron Carter and pianist Lonnie Liston Smith. I understand that from here Barbieri quickly moved on to the bland, unintentionally comical world of smooth jazz, so I'd like to assure those familiar with only his later work that this is quite far from that shite, and worthy of your attention.

Track listing:
1. Tupac Amaru
2. Carnavalito
3. Falsa Bahiana
4. El Dia Que Me Quieras
5. El Arriero
6. Bahia

Under fire


  1. ¡Muchas gracias!

  2. Excellent album :D Thanks!

  3. kinda scratching my head on your description of this....this IS the comical smooth jazz you are referring to in your post. This certainly is not the explosive avant explosiveness of his 60's Don Cherry sessions, this is Last Tango in Paris and Caliente type romantic sides both great records as is this one. Sonny Rollins had bills to pay too and also had to smooth out his thing but Gato's enormous and passionate tone is a thing of wonder for ever...

    1. Not sure what record you're hearing, but this ain't smooth jazz. It's not Don Cherry far-out, I'll grant you that, but few things are.

    2. Described to a