Kamasi Washington: The Epic | Album Review

Fri, Jul 3, 2015, 15:16


The Epic

Kamasi Washington



Kamasi Washington’s new album certainly lives up to the billing. A 32-piece orchestra, 20-strong choir and 10-band members producing a 172-minute, three-volume, 17-track suite ensures you’ve earned the right to call your work epic.

Beyond the dimensions and scale, though, The Epic soars with Washington steering his ship through some fascinating waters.

While you’d expect hip-hop or electronic trimmings from a man tight with Snoop Dogg, The Epic is instead an affectionate, enthusiastic and masterful tip of the hat to some of jazz’s past runnings.

Washington’s debt to John Coltrane and others is clear to see.

But it’s not all tributes to jazz’s past and Washington and his ensemble find the time and space again and again to make their own, definitive, dastardly statements of intent.