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Nicola Conte – Umoja [Far Out Recordings]

“Umoja”, the latest lp from Nicola Conte is a blissful amalgam of spiritual jazz, Brazilian and African rhythms. Conte continues his ascension from a DJ/Producer to a guitarist and bandleader. There’s an array of superb musicians on board that give these recordings wings to soar. Vocalist Zara MacFarland graces two of the twelve tracks here. “Arise” and “Freedom & Progress” The latter is a sublime tune that captures the essence of Afro soul and Brazilian rhythms. “Into The Light of Love” is another winner that brims with rumbling percussion and features the vocals of Myles Sanko. “Umoja Unity” is an adventurous fusion of jazz and samba rhythms. Pianist Pietro Lussu injects an enormous amount of energy in a short amount of time. The track builds and flows organically while the melodies linger long after the song has finished. All the compositions here were recorded in one or two takes. The result is another marvelous recording worthy of repeated listens.


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