This review is from: Brown Street (Audio CD)
A long time ago I bought Weather Report's Black Market out of curiosity - they were getting good reviews but no airplay so it was a shot in the dark. It was just out so it must have been 1976?
I remember my first thoughts were that this was music for a big band done on the cheap. I grew out of that fairly quickly and Black Market is now a life favourite on mine, one of the great albums.
But here we have Weather Repot being done by a big band, with Zawinul at the helm and I have to say that I've gone back to my original opinion, the music was supposed to sound like this. It really is jaw-droppingly good. The title number, which was a scorcher on 8:30 is incandescent here. I've listened to it god knows how many times and it still gets me dancing, the drummer just pushes and pushes and pushes, the band probably had to go and lie down in a darkened room after it, I know I sometimes do.
But from this high it just gets better, the music just grows and grows, facets and angles that were glossed over on the original albums are expanded and lit in technicolour. It simply is a joyous exploration of the best of Weather Report/Zawinul in a way that shows the music in its true light.
A special note for the sax player, my first thoughts were "if only...": nah, I was wrong, it wouldn't be better with Wayne Shorter, it would be different - for sure. But not better than this.
Buy it, play it loud: if you play it on headphones the first time expect to make a prat of yourself.