Max Wild -||- TAMBA [ObliqSound, 2010]
The versatile and talented songwriter/saxophonist Max Wild a native of Zimbabwe arrives just in time to unleash the inescapable rhythms tied to the infectious of colors on his fascinating debut recording “TAMBA” (Dance) on ObliqSound. In truth and spirit Max Wild celebrates the intimacy of this wonderful palette in a unique way with music deeply grounded in the indigenous sounds, textures, shapes, melodies and arrangements that encompasses the pulse and culture of its people. Moreover, Wild infuses these colorful elements accented with the various influences of jazz and funk twisted in the fabric creating a new dimension in music with his own engaging voice.
The enchanting vibe of “Kwatinobva,” embraces the audible expressions of its southern Africa landscape with bittersweet consequences. As the contagious ingredients of this gem groans with excitement it features as Wild describes his chief collaborator vocalist /guitarist Sam Mtukudzi the son of Zimbabwean music legend Oliver Mtukudzi. Unfortunately, his son Sam Mtukudzi passed away back in March of this year due to being evolved in a car accident … this piece also features the charismatic vocals of mbria star Chiwoniso who inscribes her signature into the beginning of this exhilarating music journey.
The sweet aura of music on TAMBA is saturated in the rhythms, melodies and grooves of “Tinomutenda” which also features the gifted Sam Mtukudzi. On the first spin, you’ll experience a joyful noise as you find yourself immersed in the complex tones embedded in the tempo is simply intoxicating and ecstatic sound.
“TAMBA’S,” inspiring rhythms and colors sing in harmony as the power of suggestion beckons us to rejoice and dance with unyielding passion. Wild on alto adjacent to Mtukudzi on guitar exemplifies artistry that’s pulsating, brilliant and powerful as the ensemble’s kinetic interplay is undoubtedly a jazz lover’s delight. Also featured here and throughout this compelling session is a marvelous young bassist named Michael Olatuja who also spends time performing internationally in the various venues of London and Lagos, Nigeria.
Producer Michele Locatelli views Max Wild as a “great innovator and bandleader with a tight groove and narrative to follow.” For the moment, Max reflects on the emotions and spirit of his childhood upbringing on the soulful and radiant voicings of “Rudo Rwako.”
Vocalist and songwriter Chiwoniso presence is felt with her ingenious contribution to the canvas of “TAMBA” with the energetic yet sophisticated harmonies exalted from the womb of “Kuvakidzana.” Lyrically, the words of this song covey – “implore with us to listen to one another, work together as human beings and build something together.” The music was co-authored by collaborating talents of Wild and Mtukudzi.
The voicing’s of “In Your World” appears to be deliberately slow in pace with a chorus of chiming wind like instrumentation soon increases with shifting tones, and hypnotic phrases to eventually add a sampling of complex harmonies advancing with a fury of infused melodies while conversing with poise and splendor superb musicians do while encompassing the given opportunity.
Prior to listening to “TAMBA,” I had no idea but I was pleasantly surprised to hear vocals as predominant instruments and in the native language throughout. Now for those of you who don’t care for vocals, don’t let this hinder you because music is simply that … it’s lyrically atoned, flavored and seasoned with accuracy by a mesmerizing vocalist named Alicia Olatuja the wife of the talented Michael Olatuja is featured on “Odun De” with Sam Mtukudzi.
Max Wild undoubtedly knows his audience because he scores another flawless jewel with an anointed upbeat patterns and grooves titled “Ndakuvara.” Sam Mtukudzi returns with his nurturing vocals and accenting guitar work ascends parallel to the tone of Max who effectively blends his horn to resonate through the rim of cold steel with the warmth and finesse of his inviting solos for the listener to relish for more than just this moment.
“Butterfly” at this juncture is another attractive gem that translates well with the symmetrical attributes usually found within the frame of contemporary jazz. Wild is without question on point as he continues to utilize integral passages from the body of his native soundscape as a template to pen this provocative music. By chance, if I were developing a remix disc or playlist for my MP3 player this track among many of the songs from this album would definitely make the cut!
While at the last spot, in essence “Voice” summarizes the sustainable beauty of this invaluable recording by intriguing and gifted Max Wild. Ultimately this wonderful piece inhabits the artistic brilliance established within the balance of this offering is provided by the genius of the incredible Sam Mtukudzi on vocals and guitar.
From what I’ve heard initially this project flows graciously with a wealth of hope, inspiration and optimism. As I see, witness and hear, the man and his music are equal partners in this equation. Therefore, the man and prolific songwriter/musician Max Wild humbly approaches his instrument and songs with a defined vision, truth, and voice through spirit of song co-habits the virtual existence of man and his music and to play with an ardent style, purpose, power and excellence without fear, question or doubt of over shadowing his body of work. Well done, Max Wild, well done my friend!
“TAMBA” is recommended to and for the inflatable souls of music connoisseurs everywhere.
At your leisure, please visit composer and saxophonist Max Wild on the web at www.maxwild.net …