Click here to [close]

Monday, February 6, 2023

Village of the Sun – First Light (Gearbox, 2023)

By Irena Stevanovska

In the last few years, the jazz scene in London has been exploding with new young amazing artists. One of them is the duo Binker & Moses which instantly catches not only the ear of someone who has just gotten into the UK jazz scene, but also that of long-time jazz listeners.

The duo consisting of drums (Moses Boyd) and saxophone (Binker Golding), has released a few albums, which are created so well that while listening to them you won’t even notice that there are only two instruments playing. Known also for their solo albums and collaborations with other artists, this time they created the project Village of the Sun, together with the electronic sounds of Simon Ratcliffe, one half of the legendary electronic duo Basement Jaxx. Their joint effort is a great example of one the directions in which modern jazz is developing.

As the name of the album implies, the sound of the first light is being felt. It seems like if the sunrise could sound like jazz, this would be it. The yellowness and freshness of the sunrise are being coloured during the whole album. The energy that we, living beings get from the sun is widely spread throughout the rhythmic harmonies of every track.

The collaboration of these musicians gives combined styles of music which are seen very rarely. The beginning of every song in the album sounds like a start of rave music, in which all of us know how the morning light has always been long awaited and appreciated, but then instead of boggling synthesizers and 'dancy' electronics, we get the sound of native drums and amazingly played tenor saxophone, giving much more organic perspective of the rising sun, and the day ahead.

As much as the jazz culture is connected to late night moods and after-hours sessions, this album, continuing Sun Ra’s tradition of appreciating the sun rays and the morning light, in just 30 minutes manages to naturally produce high levels of serotonin, giving a different perspective to the appreciation of the beginning of a new day.