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Dwight Trible - Living Water

Dwight Trible, Living Water

Review by Jack Foley

IndieLondon Rating: 2 out of 5

THE success of Dwight Trible’s Love Is The Answer has prompted the Ninja Tune label to put out Living Water, which was originally released in America in 2004.

Whereas the former album marked Trible’s collaboration with Ammoncontact’s Carlos Nino and the young beatmakers of Los Angeles, Living Water finds the singer, musician and storyteller taking centre-stage.

The result is an album that’s certain to appeal to die-hard jazz purists but very few others besides. It lacks any of the crossover appeal of Love Is The Answer and for non-jazz fans (of which I am one) is something of an arduous journey.

There’s no doubting the silky smooth texture of Trible’s vocals – occasionally laidback, but more often expansive and stretched to the max – but this feels like a self-indulgent exercise in jamming that is really only for the purists.

The album is put together with pianist John Rangel, drummer Daniel Bejerano and bassist Trevor Ware and is further enhanced by guests such as percussion maestros Munyungo Jackson and Derf Reklaw, flautist Joshua Spiegelman and poets Kamau Daaood and Blay Ambolley.

It features a couple of Trible originals, such as Peace (delivered a capella) as well as new takes on jazz staples such as Andy Bey’s Celestial Blues and Wayne Shorter’s Footprints.

But tracks like the nine-minute ode to John Coltrane on the track of the same name only succeed in delivering a form of jazz that I find most excruciating – long, drawn out and rather like one interminable jamming session that’s probably more enjoyable for the performer than it is for the listener.

Most of the remaining efforts place a firm emphasis on Trible’s vocals and include the odd musical solo – but unless you’re a die-hard sucker for jazz in its purest form, I would stay well away.

Track listing:

  1. Wise One
  2. John Coltrane
  3. Ishmael
  4. Footprints
  5. Celestial Blues
  6. Little Sunflowers
  7. Africa
  8. Wild Is The Wind
  9. Peace