Monday 21 November 2022

'A Supreme Vibe' by The Supreme Court

'A Supreme Vibe' is the new full-length album from The Supreme Court musical collective released through Copenhagen's April Records marking the label's final release for what has been a truly outstanding year.

As flag wavers for Danish jazz, April Records have actively sought-out projects that take exciting and innovative perspectives on contemporary jazz - from the neo-soul inspired compositions of the brilliant OTOOTO and the upcoming project by Tigeroak, the global music perspectives offered up by Kalaha and the brilliance of Alawari who strived to "tear the world apart" and invited the listener to piece it back together.  

Each of the label's releases has delivered something of a definitive manifesto about the genre with clear designs for taking the music into thrilling new directions.  Now the turn of The Supreme Court, the quartet use their debut project to take the baton and spearhead explorations that merge jazz with hip-hop and soul shining a light on Denmark's thriving underground scene.

Comprised of bassist Jonathan Rahbæk, guitarist Johannes Wamberg, pianist Jacob Broholm and Andreas Fryland on drums, The Supreme Court foursome boast an incredible level of experience across the broad spectrum of performance and creation - with the band members each in-demand as session and touring musicians, they are also noted for their compositions within film and theatre, their participation within numerous musical collectives and solo projects in their own right.

Musically, the group immerse 'A Supreme Vibe' within a more soul-inspired soundscape and are backed by an incredible array of artists and musicians each wonderfully committed to helping realise a bold and dynamic vision.  Rappers including Joseph Agami, E. Brown, Al Agami and Kuku Agami feature heavily throughout alongside some very welcome musical guests in Oilly Wallace (saxophonist) and Jonas Due (trumpet) from OTOOTO.  The hip-hop inspirations that run throughout the album are punctuated by the free-flowing nature of songs and collaborations, and the sometimes short run-time of some of the tracks actually helps to further cement the concept by emulating an old-skool mixtape aesthetic to the project as a whole.

There are a number of highlights throughout 'A Supreme Vibe' including the ethereal 'Hjem' which boasts a sensational vocal from singer-songwriter Bette; 'Bird Seed', a quintessential soul number featuring a great vocal from Patrick Dorgan, and 'Passing Moments' featuring Al Agami which boasts some genuinely infectious and sublime production bolstered by some excellent horn assistance from Wallace, Due and Roald Elm Larsen.

While 'A Supreme Vibe' is very much an album wholly distinct for April Records, it absolutely does continue with the label's overarching theme of exploration - the elegant production and arrangements and the crisp performances from an awesome collection of artists are all synonymous traits with the label's past releases that pay homage to a new and modern era of hip-hop, soul and jazz music.

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