While the Los Angeles-based Yellowjackets have been a creative force on the jazz scene since 1981 when they recorded their eponymous debut, their fourth Mack Avenue Records album, Raising Our Voice, once again ups the ante with bold new strides by inviting vocalist extraordinaire Luciana Souza to collaborate with the group for seven of its thirteen tunes as well as subtly taking a resistant stand against the status quo of the cultural and political undercurrent of our times.
The Yellowjackets have consistently forged ahead in their evolving artistic statements. The band has recorded close to 30 albums, been nominated for 17 GRAMMY® Awards, and has adventurously amplified the eclectic, electro-acoustic soundscape, creating a unique jazz sound since its fusion beginnings. Mack Avenue
This release sounds to me like a gauntlet hitting the ground. I hear a group of players who sound like they're releasing their first record. Playing with the fire and ebullience of musicians newly bonded. I hear the resounding impact of a group of players, who with elegance and sophistication, are giving us a gentle nudge to remind us that they can do this all day long, and we will listen!
David Segal and I are and have been, superfans of this group from day one. Getting a chance to provide Dane Alderson with the bass he used on portions of this album and now exclusively, on all Yellowjackets live dates, has filled us with life affirming pride and vindication as bass builders and fans of great and indelible music. Check out this amazing recording and see them live at a venue near you! Those of us who know, know that you will not be disappointed. Ever! David Beasley
Photos by Anna WEBBER & Maciej MARGIELSKI
Video footage provided by Federico BARLUZZI & Mack AVENUE