Sunday, August 29, 2010

Pax (1951)

So I’ve figured out in the course of picking my favorite label designs that the combo of gold or silver ink and matte gem tones gets me every time. A former owner has written the key of the tunes in pencil here, too- I really hope it’s because they were playing along.

Albert Ayler was, of course, highly influenced by New Orleans brass band music. The Eureka Brass Band plays these dirges and stomps in such a raw, immediate, loose and soulful way that it’s easy to draw a connecting line to Ayler’s folk blues free jazz.

Oh man, I love this record, it’s the best (read: least slick) recording of New Orleans funeral music I’ve come across. I just realized that it isn’t clear from the album title or the cover or center label that the titular “Parade” is a funeral procession- maybe the Pax thought it’d be best for sales to bury the music's purpose in the liner notes? Ah well, a funeral parade is what it is- and what a way to go, too.