August 17, 2023

Irreversible Entanglements - "Our Land Back"

Jazz collective Irreversible Entanglements recently announced they'd signed with legendary label Impulse! for their new album, Protect Your Light, and now they're back with the second single, "Our Land Back."

Opening with a free-jazz breakdown of clashing percussion, rumbling bass, and prominent horns and woodwind, Irreversible Entanglements start their latest single with a slow and steady build of chaotic noise. It's a natural call back to progressive sounds from a genre that has been pushing boundaries and expectations for over a century. Just before the three minute mark, things slow down and rhythms start to become clear. A piano riff surfaces, drums take on a beat, and horns begin to add flourishes of texture instead of bold statements. At the center comes the voice of Camae , better known by her stage name of Moor Mother. Her dry, direct delivery is a divine statement from a prolific storyteller and one of the best poets of her generation. The back half begins to reveal itself and unveils a pattern that more will find more relatable, familiar, and straightforward. The elements of the song never change, but the group's ability to shift their focus and transition from interstellar spiritual jazz to something with more structure is just one of their many talents, but here they showcase these remarkable skills with vibrant perfection. "Our Land Back" according to the band is their most overtly political work yet and is "an anthem to struggles for self-determination by peoples who have been dispossessed of their land and denied their right to return. It swings for autonomy and solidarity and against forgetting." It might not strike as a bold anthem, but at its heart, the message could not be more clear.

Protect Your Light is out September 8.

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