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Nil's Jazz Ensemble 'Reflexiones' (Mukatsuku)

Nil's Jazz Ensemble
'Reflexiones' / 'Siempre'

When it comes to rare albums, then Nil's Jazz Ensemble's self titled jazz excursion from 1977 is a scarce and pretty expensive masterpiece. Recorded in Peru for the Mag label, this luscious recording marries the rich analogue recording techniques of the late 70s (especially in South America) with a group of musicians on top of their game to achieve thrilling results.

Kicking off with the Clavinet, one of the funkiest instruments out there, 'Reflexiones' accelerates towards jazz-fusion heaven at a fast pace. Like all great tracks of this ilk, everything is built around a groove that sounds as loose as it does rock-solid. Then the melodies from either horns or keys are free to meander amongst the rhythm section's complex structure. And here it is both heavy and light, nasty face and blissful, a beautifully complete composition that packs so much into an arrangement of just under 4 minutes.

Over on the B, 'Siempre' is a breezy almost ditty-ish number, that is until about 52 seconds in when it really grooves before returning to the lighter refrains of the beginning parts. Definitely a top-drawer jazz dancer.

A lovely jazz release from Mukatsuku already gettings plays from Paul Murphy, Gilles Peterson, Patrick Forge, Mr Thing, DJ Koco, Skeme Richards, Bobitto, Dom Servini, DJ Muro and DJ Mitsu. Exactly the list of DJs I would expect it to be with a reissue like this!

Oh, and for further listening get hold of the album if you can, their version of John Handy's 'Hard Work' is spectacular.

Buy: Juno