on 8 January 2001
The long wait for the reissue of Sun Ra's funk album, 'Lanquidity', is over! Recorded in 1978, this is the most accessible of Ra's cosmic explorations. Despite being more groove-orientated than much of his other work it will not disappoint even the hardiest fans of his further out recordings. No Pat Patrick on this one unfortunately, but the rest of the crazy gang are very much in evidence, including Marshall Allen and John Gilmore. The album contains all the greatest elements of Ra's sound. The creeping, interweaving horns, dramatic, tumbling percussion, ethnic chants and of course the keys of the original Afronaught himself. 'Lanquidity' finds Ra at his eerie and atmospheric best. Overdubbing flowing piano lines with creepy moog stabs to great effect. 'Where Pathways Meet' is a rollicking funk workout, with booming horns riffing under spellbinding soloists. 'There are Other Worlds ...' is an amazing soundscape blending echoey electric piano, synth washes and long winding solos. Overdubbed by members of the Arkestra sharply whispering, 'there are other worlds they have not told you of..' which, at two in the morning when you're a bit worse for wear is frankly terrifying. This record is really compelling record, an absolute must have that you won't be able to stop listening too. Welcome to the loving freedom of Ra's jail.
on 14 January 2016
Other than Space is the Place I've not really plunged into the world of post 60's Sun Ra until I bought this which blew my mind as all great Sun Ra does. It is not as free as his earlier stuff but the swing is most definitely there and with, for me, the stand out tune Where Pathways Meet is one of his best of all time, certainly in my top 5.
I've only recently got into Sun Ra, but have already become at least partially familiar with the full range of the material from his early, more conventional, phase through to his very experimental stuff (which at its most extreme i must admit i struggled with). But this album is just right, completely absorbing grooves that are heavily atmospheric, and although Sun Ra's characteristic 'spaceiness' is well in evidence, it's best described in my mind as the soundtrack to 'Taxi Driver' that never was, that feeling of the big sleazy city at night time, with endless possibilities and the feeling that the night will never end.
It's still quite experimental, particularly on the first track, but never overwhelmingly so, and once it warms up it's superb.
It's sulphuric rivers on far away planets, shooting stars darting across the stratosphere, our minds bent to see and hear other things.
Ra's Languidy conjures up so many images, so many foreign emotions as it slowly tip-toes along, creeping under your skin.
"Where pathways meet," is where things come alive, a jumping tumult, all behind that croaking beat laid down by the sax. There's chance far all types of fun and games, plenty of sneaky witchcraft on the guitar.
"That's how I feel," is a so wonderfully lonesome, its baseline insipid, enternal. The whole record fit together nicely with the vocal on the languorious,"There are no other worlds."
A relative newcomer to Sun Ra's music I chose this as a starting point having headed the advice of the reviewer below. A gateway to other galaxies indeed
on 9 December 2012
If, like me, you've discovered sun ra through the herbie/miles jazz funk route, then this is a great place to start. Awesome funky grooves but in the unique Sun Ra style, quite different to his other albums (that i've heard so far anyway). Twin stars of thence is unbelievable. I would also recommend sleeping beauty, on jupiter (the first ten minutes of seductive fantasy is absolutely beautiful), cosmos and futuristic sounds. I believe i'm just at the cusp of the Sun Ra journey, but the amazing uniqueness of sound in these albums is just memorising - makes you wonder if he was actually from another planet! Also check out the BBC Four documentary on Sun Ra - amazing.