The Ultimate Adventure

The Ultimate Adventure

by Chick CoreaChick Corea


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For the second time in two years, Chick Corea has assembled a band to give aural illustration to the fantasy writings of L. Ron Hubbard. For those who have trouble with Hubbard and his teachings, this may be a red flag to avoid the record altogether. The Ultimate Adventure is a tale that draws on characters from the Arabian Nights -- there is an ad for the book in the back of the CD booklet. With that out of the way, one has to deal with the music entirely on its own terms. Corea has spent decades playing both electric and acoustic jazz. This is the first time since 1976's My Spanish Heart that he has woven his love of both so completely into a single album. There are more than a few echoes here that call upon the ghosts of the earliest Return to Forever band -- primarily in the gorgeous flute playing of Hubert Laws and Jorge Pardo, in the saxophone artistry of Tim Garland, the drumming of Steve Gadd, and the percussion wizardry of not only Airto Moreira, but also of Hossam Ramzy -- just to name a few of this album's players. But as always, it's Corea's compositions and playing that make or break any of his outings. This one is complex, knotty, and contains nuevo flamenco sketches and exotic melodic grooves and rhythms from "North Africa" and the Middle East. The second part of the opening suite "Three Ghouls" -- which makes it ghoul number two, apparently -- showcases Corea on the electric piano and electronic percussion with Laws playing soulful and slightly funky. His flute gets double-tracked as it floats above Moreira and bassist Carles Benavent. It's spacey, airy groove is intoxicating. It morphs into the knotty percussive and slightly "out" part three, where palmas -- handclapped rhythms -- by Corea, Gadd, and Benavent are contrasted to the dissonant acoustic piano and funky Rhodes woven side by side in counterpoint. This stands in contrast to the electric, short, fused-out, three-part suite entitled "Moseb the Executioner." The first part is a tangled mix up of Garland and Corea's Rhodes. It ends in a percussion orgy by Moreira and Ruben Dantas with palmas by the entire band. There are gorgeous melodic interludes in "North Africa" courtesy of Pardo and Corea. "Flight from Karoof" is simply a fusion gem. Ultimately, Ultimate Adventure works extremely well; it's inspired, takes chances, and is compositionally a small wonder. Above all, it sounds like Corea and his band had a ball making it. Recommended for fusion-heads.

Product Details

Release Date: 02/07/2006
Label: Stretch Records
UPC: 0013431904526
catalogNumber: 9045
Rank: 88098

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Armando Anthony Corea   Primary Artist,Synthesizer,Percussion,Piano,Keyboards,fender rhodes,electronic percussion,Palmas
Paco de Lucía   Flamenco Guitar
Frank Gambale   Acoustic Guitar
Hubert Laws   Flute
Airto Moreira   Percussion,Vocals,Shaker
Jorge Pardo   Flute,Alto Flute,Soprano Saxophone,Palmas
Carles Benavent   Bass,Bass Guitar,Palmas
Tom Brechtlein   Drums
Vinnie Colaiuta   Drums
Rubem Dantas   Percussion,Tambourine,Pandeiro,Palmas
Steve Gadd   Drums,Palmas
Hossam Ramzy   Percussion
Tim Garland   Bass Clarinet,Tenor Saxophone
Ruben Dantes   Percussion

Technical Credits

Armando Anthony Corea   Producer,Audio Production
Bernie Kirsh   Engineer
Emanuele Ruffinengo   Sound Design
Marc Bessant   Artwork

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