The idea of a late 80s Pharoah Sanders record had me conjuring all sorts of wild shit, but this October 1989 date in Paris is surprisingly relaxed and highly listenable. By this point I guess he figured his far-out spiritual-skronking-free-jazz credentials were solidified (they were), so he could keep it smooth and in-tune. The gorgeous title track opens the session with a super mellow vocal over a restrained soul jazz groove. Horace Silver’s “Moon Rays” is basically a perfect instrumental with Pharoah’s tenor playing a modest second chair to Eddie Moore’s divine drumming (he’s exquisite throughout this session; it’s some of the most spiritual playing I’ve heard in a while). The mood ramps up on “The Night Has A Thousand Eyes” and “All Or Nothing At All” before winding down with “Soon” and “Moniebah.” Overall, the record bears more resemblance to Lonnie Liston Smith’s early albums than Pharoah’s gnarly stuff with Trane, but the few moments where he really gets open are more potent when peppered into mellower fare like this. First-ever vinyl reissue with obi strip and liner notes, limited to 500, recommended.
- 180g black vinyl pressing
- first time on vinyl since 1990
- includes obi strip
- limited edition of 500
- music label: Tidal Waves Music 2019
reviewed by nick nightingale 10/2019