Superior Viaduct


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Another legendary one out @Superior Viaduct, the super rare (and amazing) debut by sax / flute player Byard Lancaster on Atlantic's subsidiary label Vortex dedicated to avant-garde jazz. Featuring Sonny Sharrock on guitar. Quoting the Andy Beta's brilliant review on Pitchfork "When John Coltrane succumbed to cancer in 1967, free jazz/fire music was sucked into a giant vacuum along with him. A patron of music and patron saint to so many of its players, there was a crossroads left in his wake. Electric instrumentation was slowly seeping in from one side, and with it, its rockist and studio-manipulated pleasures. Miles Davis employed electric keyboards, punched in solos and seamlessly edited tracks in this era, and is an obvious example, as are folks like Eddie Harris and Charles Lloyd, who were similarly amplifying and opening for rock groups at the Fillmore West. The other route was to take the music even further out into the cosmos, as Albert Ayler did with his inner-being blues holler or the Art Ensemble of Chicago, with their Pan-African extrapolations into the primal unknown. Few attempts were made fto find a middle ground though, that could mingle jazz with rock, or free-playing in a more palatable pop manner without falling victim to the later Fusion craze. Or at least so I thought, until coming across this Byard Lancaster reissue of his debut recording as band leader.