Chip Wickham - Shamal WindLovemonk
With "Shamal Wind" flutist/saxophonist Chip Wickham draws inspiration from Arabian influences. Specifically Doha, a land rooted in ancient cultures and a destination for him to recover from throat Cancer. A new perspective on life inspires him to release five albums within the next five years. For now let's just enjoy this engaging record. Recorded in Madrid, Wickham's band is comprised of musicians from Spain as well as the UK who were part of the soul jazz circuit he helped cultivate from years past. On the sublime title "Shamal Wind", Wickham's warm touch receives harmonic support from Ton Risco on vibes. "Snake Eyes" is a explosive tune that showcases Wickham's fluttering expressive flute and Phil Wilkinson's prowess on keys. Matthew Halsall jumps aboard and combines warm melodies on the splendid modal ballad "The Mirage". Wickham is following the lineage of Spiritual jazz multi-instrumentalists like Yusef Lateef and Sahib Shihab. It's a blessing that he's restored his health and contributing superb compositions once again.
Reg Dancy, 06/18