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Prog [Us Import]

The Bad Plus Audio CD
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
Price: 9.24 & FREE Delivery in the UK on orders over 10. Details
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For the past ten years The Bad Plus Reid Anderson, Ethan Iverson and David King have broken down the walls of jazz convention and created an uncompromising body of work. Few jazz groups in recent memory have amassed such acclaim, and few have inspired such controversy. Their belief in the band ethos and their personal brand of avant-garde populism have put them at the forefront of a new ... Read more in Amazon's The Bad Plus Store

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for 11 albums, 8 photos, discussions, and more.

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Product details

  • Audio CD (8 May 2007)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Heads Up
  • ASIN: B000NQQ4OC
  • Other Editions: Audio CD  |  MP3 Download
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 78,522 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

1. Everybody Wants To Rule The World
2. Physical Cities
3. Life On Mars
4. Mint
5. Giant
6. Thiftstore Jewelry
7. Tom Sawyer
8. This Guy's In Love With You
9. The World Is The Same
10. 1980 World Champion

Product Description

BBC Review

We're making music to engage the audience', insists bassist Reid Anderson. And after experiencing this sinuous and spellbinding set from the trio you'll agree wholeheartedly.

Prog is the first release on the groups' own imprint, Do The Math, and signals a marked rejuvenation full of zest and primal hunger after the comfortable Columbia years. Sure, the covers are still there - Bowie's ''Life On Mars'', Rush's ''Tom Sawyer'' and Tears For Fears' ''Everybody Wants To Rule The World'' all get deconstructed and spun out from lilting intros - but they are more than matched by the original compositions of Anderson & co ('1980 World Champion' for instance).

Rather than pondering motives for choosing such covers - 'is it irony! is it sincerity or is it a mid-life crisis?' - let's accept Prog for what it is: a free-spirited and fun excursion into the dynamic of the trio format by a twenty-year-old highly literate band of 'gypsies'. The album title suggests wig outs-aplenty and introspective noodling, but despite some gloriously 'out to lunch' moments on tracks such as the panoramically ferocious ''Physical Cites'' (superbly co-produced by one-time AC/DC engineer Tony Platt) the trio explore light and shade, the ballad and the brusque, through Ethan Iverson's dramatic scurrying and occasionally disorientated swoops on piano (''Tom Sawyer''). He's ably abetted by David King on drums (adding almost retro backbeat to ''Life On Mars'', then brutal blows to ''Thriftstore Cowboy'') and the strong pulse of Anderson ('Giant').

By no means glamorous or gimmicky, but certainly invested with the cinematic scope and epic proportions of 70's rock (take a bow Tony Platt), Prog is The Bad Plus more live and intuitive than ever. --Amar Patel

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Product Description

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fresh air and new heights 4 Nov 2007
By Jules
Format:Audio CD
Jazz fresh air never smelt so good. The Bad Plus are one of the best modern jazz bands in the world. Their music has got better and better over the years and this CD has helped them reach another high-point.

This is music that describes a band of equal partners, high ambition and equally high attainment; it's music that moves you from the very opening phrases of the 'Everybody wants to rule the world', the track that starts the CD, to the industrial tension of the rhythmically demanding 'Physical cities' with its motorcycle purring double bass line and crashing conclusion. I also love the quirkiness of the compilation (putting pop, rock and original tunes together) and composition titles such as 'Thriftstore jewelry'.

If you've not heard of the Bad Plus and this is your first venture into their music you will certainly be kicking yourself for not having discovered them before.

When music is this good you might wonder where further innovation will from. You may also be wise to keep an eye (and an ear) out for the next Bad Plus release.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 4.5 out of 5 stars  22 reviews
20 of 24 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Stop calling them "covers" 29 May 2007
By Brian Henderson - Published on
Format:Audio CD
I'm not going to make proclamations like, "The Bad Plus is the future of jazz music," or anything like that. However, concerning their "covers," as you reviewers enjoy calling them so much, might I point out that there is a long-standing tradition in jazz to play tunes you like that you (or anyone else on the recording session for that matter) did not write yourself. And what do we now call those tunes? Standards. But the process by which a song becomes a standard is not that of a committee sitting in a room, deciding what goes in the Real Book and what doesn't. It's a process by which artists play tunes they enjoy playing, and after numerous artists have put their voice to a tune, maybe it becomes a standard. I see what the Bad Plus does with their interpretations of more contemporary rock songs as a continuation of that same tradition. The Bad Plus play tunes they enjoy, as far as I can tell, and they kill each and every one of them. Even if they play it faithfully to the original, they still kill it and give it their own Bad Plus stamp. Would you ever confuse the Rush version of Tom Sawyer with the Bad Plus Version? I doubt it.

It is somewhat regrettable that there aren't more original compositions by the band on this record, since they're all great composers with their own individual voices. But, might I also remind you, that the jazz player composes in the moment, even if they didn't write the song itself.

The Bad Plus is a great presence on the musical scene today, especially in the Jazz idiom. They bring joy, exuberance, and incredible musicality to everything they do. You don't judge their music. It judges you.
16 of 20 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Another terrific album by The Bad Plus 15 May 2007
By A music lover - Published on
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
These guys have a way with covers. But their own material is great, too. I don't agree with the Amazon reviewer that sees some of their covers as jokes that are funny once but not the second or third time. Music which functions only as a joke often falls flat, but the covers on this album are much more (if they are jokes at all) - I think they take themselves seriously as music, even if they do have fun with the tunes in the process. Anyway, art is in the eye of the beholder - one man's masterpiece is another man's headscratcher. If you like contemporary jazz, particularly jazz piano trios, and you like your music challenging yet communicative and highly listenable, get this. If you have an affection for the originals, it will only add to your enjoyment. There's a variety of approaches here, and they all work just fine.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars In some ways Bad Plus's best album yet 7 July 2007
By Scott Williams - Published on
Format:Audio CD
Overall, I would rate this as the Bad Plus's best album. With the excpetion of suspicious activity it has the best songwriting and it has the best adapations of cover songs of all bad plus albumns. The covers are are good choices and the adaptations are brilliant. Physical cities and Giant are interstesting new songs. Suspicious activity introduced more new songs, and in that way is better than Prog, but Prog is solid from start to finish and the overall consistency makes it Bad Plus's best albumn yet.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A good entry into jazz for rock fans 29 Jun 2007
By John W. Skirtich - Published on
Format:Audio CD
As a rock fan - and a prog rock fan in particular - I was intrigued by the concept of this CD so I picked it up. And I must say that I love it! I've always dabbled a little bit in jazz, but this recording fuses the two genres in a way that I find appealing and even fascinating. Unlike some of the reviewers, I love the "Tom Sawyer" cover; it is anchored enough in the original and then takes off with its own ideas and the awe-inspiring musicianship of the group. Having enjoyed this CD I'm going to get the others too. In the end, I think jazz aficionados can take comfort from the fact that this CD will expose some to jazz who otherwise wouldn't have given it a shot.
29 of 41 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Does anyone really LIKE listening to this music? 5 Jun 2007
By Jan P. Dennis - Published on
Format:Audio CD
I can't quite shake the feeling, after listening to this alien music for the past week or so, that I've been duped. And though I think Prog is somewhat of a recovery after Give and (esp.) Suspicious Activity, I can't bring myself to totally sign on.

I have thoughts like these as I listen: Wow, Dave King brings something to his kit that few jazz drummers ever have (although I could do with a little less bombast and heavy-handiness). Or, Ethan Iverson's displaying some awesome chops (although he still strikes me as awfully mannered). Or, Reid Anderson actually has some pretty attractive songs on this disc (although the band unnecessarily beats "Physical Cities" to a bloody pulp).

Bottom line--I can't convince myself that these boys aren't stuck in unwitting self-parody. That is, attitude trumps substance. To be expected, I suppose, when a band comes with this much hype--and apparently believes it.

Nevertheless, I'm pretty much bowled over by the covers (unlike some of the other reviewers), especially the laconic tumescence of "Everybody Wants to Rule the World" and "This Guy's in Love with You." "Tom Sawyer" strikes me as funny, and "Life on Mars" as appropriately weird.

Actually, in a lot of ways, this is a pretty killer disc, although, it must be said, the vibe pretty quickly wears thin. Consequently, I find myself not picking it to listen to for the pure pleasure it gives, but to access its quirkiness. Which, unfortunately, tends to relegate it to novelty status.

That said, it's quite an attractive novelty. Somewhere between 3 and 5 stars.
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