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Psychic Warrior - Psychic Warrior

Psychic Warrior - Psychic WarriorThis first release by Jazz quartet, Psychic Warrior is guaranteed to delight fans of the genre.  The driving force behind the band is top improv pianist, Alex Maguire who is joined by saxophonist, Elton Dean (In Cahoots, Softs, Pip Pyle's Bash, and many others), guitarist Fred T Baker (In Cahoots, Pip Pyle's Bash, Vikki Clayton etc.) and percussionist Liam Genocky (Zzebra, Steeleye Span).

Psychic Warrior is jazz in free flow style but, as one would expect from such an illustrious line-up, there is a strong Canterbury edge.

I am reminded of elements of National Health, Soft Machine, Pip Pyle's Bash and maybe In Cahoots.  Whilst Elton's sax plays a starring role, Alex switches from his usual piano to Hammond organ, thus creating a totally new tapestry.  That is not to say that piano is totally forgotten as can be heard on the track Hail Mary Pass where Alex massages the trusty old Fender Rhodes.

I am more au fait with Fred's guitar prowess but can assure you that on the heavier strings of a bass he is up there with the very best.  When you have listened to this album a few times, play it again and follow a particular instrument closely and marvel at the journey. Liam's drumming is spot on and yet a totally different style to that in his Steeleye Span guise.

Of this six track, 54 minute debut, the highlight for me has to be Marina, which is possibly the proggiest track as it happens.  In the end, I'm a sucker for sax and Hammond.

Jazz-fusion and Canterbury Jazz stalwarts will be in their element on hearing Psychic Warrior, but the album's easy accessibility is such that no progressive rock fan with a predisposition for the jazzier side need fear.  Recommended.

Jem Jedrzejewski

Hux Records

 

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