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6 Reviews
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Blinging, spiritual, uplifting, 30 Dec 2003
By 
Mr. D. N. Sumption (Sheffield, UK) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Ask the Ages (Audio CD)
This is an incredible album, Sharrock's last before his untimely death and in my opinion showcasing him at the absolute peak of his talents. He always used to cite John Coltrane as the biggest influence on his guitar playing, and nowhere is the connection between the two made more clearly than here. Sharrock trades riffs with Coltrane's old sparring partner Pharoah Sanders, driven on by Coltrane's drummer Elvin Jones, and the riffs just melt and drip off the fretboard in a way that is pure Coltrane transposed to the guitar (and nobody plays guitar anything like Sonny Sharrock - his percussive fluid approach is entirely his own). But at the soul of the album is Sharrock's own music, incredibly beautiful, soulful melodies that tear at the heart strings. So sad that he had to leave us after this album, clamouring for more, but it's hard to imagine a more fitting epitaph.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An overlooked masterpiece, 30 May 2000
By A Customer
This review is from: Ask the Ages (Audio CD)
Buy this CD. All four musicians play a blinder in a session that integrates power playing, freedom and Elvin Jones at his skull battering best. Absolutely breathtaking.
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5.0 out of 5 stars classic, 11 Mar 2012
This review is from: Ask the Ages (Audio CD)
I have recently returned to listening to this cd. I'm no jazzbo but the power and haunting melodies cut across genres.Classic.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Every hifi deserves one of these, 22 Sep 2007
By 
Smitty Werbenjaegermanjensen (real name) (Thread rehab facility 37) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (TOP 1000 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: Ask the Ages (Audio CD)
I got this one after reading that it was one of Julian Copes favourite albums, basically to see what the fuss was all about. What a great move!! This is truly an under-reported master piece. It has everything that a great album ought to in my book ie.. blinding guitar playing, raw emotion, talent and commitment that shines through all out in the open thanks to the production.

Sonny Sharrock is a guitar player who has literally developed a style of playing jazz that is as far from the standard jazz playing as it is possible to get. His playing is too wild and free form to be called rock and yet it has a very distinct rock sound to it, to liken him to the John Coltrane of the guitar would probably be close to the mark. He is capable of firing out shards of angry buzzing notes as well as nailing down the most sublime melody.

Pharoah Sanders is his equivalent on the saxophone, a man possessed of skill and imagination, following Sonny or just cutting out on his own as the occasion arises.

Elvin Jones and Charnett Moffett are the rhythm section that keep everything nice and tight, yet being able to respond to and go with the explorations of the two lead men.

The album was recorded by Jason Corsaro, usually associated with rock, and Bill Laswell, the Dub/Rock/Jazz producer. So the rock approach married to the freedom of jazz improvisation has given birth to a mutant album that reaches places few others knew existed.

Unfortunately this was to be Sonny Sharrocks last album. Who knows where he would have gone next.

Get one now!
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Sonny Sharrock's neglected masterpiece from 1991., 6 Dec 2012
By 
Jazzrook (Purbrook , Hampshire) - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: Ask the Ages (Audio CD)
Recorded in 1991 this marvellous album features some ecstatic Coltrane-influenced guitar-playing from Sonny Sharrock(1940-1994) in the high-octane company of Pharoah Sanders(tenor & soprano saxes), Charnett Moffett(bass) & Elvin Jones(drums).
The six memorable tracks are all Sharrock originals with especially fiery playing from Sanders and the highlights include 'Promises Kept', 'Who Does She Hope To Be?' & 'As We Used To Sing'.
Difficult to find now, 'Ask The Ages' is a neglected masterpiece which should be sought out by anyone who appreciates passionate and adventurous modern jazz.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The most underrated musician in jazz, 2 Nov 2010
This review is from: Ask the Ages (Audio CD)
This album is nothing short of astonishing. The kind of power this quartet generates would scare most heavy metal bands. The interplay and imagination between Sharrock and Sanders is staggering, blending melody with corruscating sounds. No jazz guitarist had this kind of visceral power (save James Ulmer perhaps). The band really cooks, even on the slower, more reflective outings.

More Sharrock i say.
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Ask the Ages
Ask the Ages by Sonny Sharrock (Audio CD - 2000)
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