David Wertman

Kara Suite

Cacophonic / Early Future Records • 1976

Steve Reid founded the Mustevic Sound Records label in the mid-seventies, mainly to be independent of trends and other people’s demands, and to be free to develop. So, it was one of those ego things. Musically, the idea was to break away from the jazz-rock sound that was popular at the time and to play a freer, edgier kind of jazz. The label started in 1976 with three records: »Nova« and »Rhythmatism«, which he had composed himself, were soon re-released by Universal Sound and immediately became part of the jazz canon (with an original pressing of 1,000 copies each, there was no national distribution at the time). He then left the third release to his bassist David Wertman. »Kara Suite« is now being re-released for the first time in a transatlantic collaboration between Cacophonic (sub-label of Finders Keepers) and Early Future Records. What a stroke of luck! Here you can hear five excellent musicians (Wertman and Reid are joined by saxophonists Charles Tyler and Ken Simon and horn player Richard Schatzenberg) playing jazz in the most spirited sense. It’s so wild I sometimes wondered who was going to clean up at the end. If you really want to find a structure, maybe it’s that David Wertman creates bass figures in short loops, over which the others fly. The best known of these bass figures can be heard on »Sunshine«. DJ Shadow sampled it prominently on »Mashin« On The Motorway« on »The Private Press«. At their core, these 31 minutes are a salute to the chaos in which everything has already been created. As well as the beauty, the new possibilities, the different perspectives. If that’s what you want.