Perhaps the most accomplished UK-born improviser of his generation, bassist Orlando le Fleming returns with his new album Romantic Funk, the long awaited follow-up to 2010's From Brooklyn With Love.
About the music, Le Fleming says: “The ‘romantic’ is personified by lush, classical harmony echoed by the nostalgic synth sounds of Pete Rende and Frank LoCrasto. The strong grooves and guitar lines are heavily influenced by Funk, although the complexities in rhythm stem from more contemporary forms of jazz.”
The pithy irreverence of the album's tracklist reflects Le Fleming's wry wit and penchant for injecting irony into musical conversation. "Pretentious Brooklyn’s” combination of popular and esoteric elements finds its composer utilizing much the same crossover approach as Miles Davis did on Live - Evil, recalling Dave Holland as readily as David Axelrod. "Focustrate" is a whirling, polyrhythmic take on the Headhunters sound, a quieter contemporary analog to the gyrating hemiolas of Wayne Krantz's modern classic Two Drink Minimum. The sublime "Myth" finds a strong asset in guest drummer Lenny Reece (otherwise known for his work with DJ Premier and Gentei Kaijo), who helps Le Fleming & co. find common ground between the Dilla-inflected Robert Glasper aesthetic of this generation, and the electric jazz canon of decades prior.
Turn off your TV and turn up the bass - Romantic Funk is out May 12th.
2. And That Sort Of Thing
5. Mr Grumble
Orlando le Fleming (Bass)
Ari Hoenig & Lenny Reece (Drums)
Greg Tuohey & Ryan Scott (Guitars)
Frank LoCrasto, Sullivan Fortner & Pete Rende (Keyboards)
Seamus Blake & Will Vinson (Saxophones)