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SUN RA & HIS ARKESTRA: Live at Montreux 2LP

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Released 1978, reissued on vinyl with gatefold sleeve

Sun Ra and his Arkestra – Live at Montreux captures a remarkable performance by the influential jazz visionary Sun Ra and his ensemble, the Arkestra. Recorded in 1976 during the Montreux Jazz Festival, this live album is a testament to Sun Ra’s avant-garde and experimental approach to jazz music.

Sun Ra, a prolific composer, bandleader, and keyboardist, was known for his unorthodox compositions and cosmic philosophies. The Arkestra, a rotating ensemble of musicians, shared Sun Ra’s commitment to pushing the boundaries of jazz. Their live performances were often theatrical and eclectic, blending elements of free jazz, improvisation, and space-age themes.

Live at Montreux captures the essence of Sun Ra’s cosmic jazz journey. The album features a diverse setlist that includes intricate compositions, freeform improvisations, and moments of sheer sonic exploration. The musicianship is extraordinary, with Sun Ra’s keyboard work and the Arkestra’s collective improvisations creating a mesmerizing and otherworldly experience.

Lyrically and thematically, Sun Ra often delved into metaphysical and philosophical topics, and his performances were accompanied by elaborate costumes and stage designs, adding a visual and theatrical dimension to the music.

While Sun Ra and his Arkestra were not widely embraced by mainstream audiences during their time, their impact on the avant-garde and experimental jazz scenes cannot be overstated. Live at Montreux serves as a compelling document of Sun Ra’s musical and philosophical vision, offering a glimpse into the innovative and uncharted territory that he and his Arkestra consistently explored.

Track Listing:

  1. For The Sunrise 2:00
  2. Of The Other Tomorrow 7:43
  3. From Out Where Others Dwell 13:25
  4. The House Of Eternal Being 9:36
  5. God Of The Thunder Realm 7:28
  6. Lights On A Satellite 4:38
  7. Piano Intro 3:50
  8. Take The A Train 7:50
  9. Prelude 3:12
  10. El Is The Sound Of Joy 8:56
  11. Encore 1 1:44
  12. Encore 2 2:28
  13. We Travel The Spaceways 4:11