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Tribal Tech X

4.4 out of 5 stars 24 customer reviews

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Audio CD, March 26, 2012
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Editorial Reviews

2012 release from Fusion pioneers, Tribal Tech. X documents the latest musical journey of this revered Jazz Fusion super group, known for their complex arrangements and phenomenal solo interplay. On X, the members of Tribal Tech, Scott Henderson, Gary Willis, Scott Kinsey, and Kirk Covington once again throw convention out the window and entered the studio without a set list of heavy arrangements. Instead, each member brought musical sketches to the table and they turned on the tape machines and bravely set out to play together as a unit. Tribal Tech has delivered perhaps the most phenomenal recording of their impressive 25+ year history as a band. This album embraces the group dynamic. Only when you have a rich band history forged by virtuoso musicians, can you achieve the kind of synergistic genius that Tribal Tech reaches on X.

Track Listings

Disc: 1

  1. Mech X
  2. Got Faith 'N Phat
  3. Time Lapse
  4. Anthem
  5. Palm Moon Plaza
  6. Gravity
  7. Working Blue
  8. Ask Me A Question
  9. Let's Get Swung
  10. Corn Butter


Product Details

  • Audio CD (March 26, 2012)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Tone Center
  • ASIN: B00701QX3A
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (24 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #112,504 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Julien on March 29, 2012
Format: Audio CD
Tribal Tech is, by far, the most harmonically innovative and tonally daring fusion jazz band of this era. Once again, Henderson, Willis, Kinsey and Covington take it up a notch, setting new standards of mind-blowing on-the-spot composition, improvisation and intricate interplay. Each member of the band possesses a tremendous command of his instrument. And as for Henderson, constantly pushing the limits of harmony, his phrasing is a complex blend of various genres, intense, vocabulary-super-rich, but still ultra musical and deeply soulful. A must-own, like all other TT and Henderson solo albums. I am usually excellent at finding ways not to pay for CDs, but when it comes to Henderson, Willis, Kinsey and Tribal Tech, I make it a point to hold a hard copy of their work, and to pay for it. In fact, $15 for so much talent is a steal. This is not just music, this is Art. And it's wild.
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I came to Tribal Tech via internet radio and my life has been fuller for it. When I first heard them, it was like Steve Martin's reaction in 'The Jerk' to swing - immediate connection. Having said that, it is apparent that I am a HUGE fan. I love this album (of course). I would say that it falls between Thick and Rocket Science for me. It does not strike me as a entirely new direction but more in the vein of Thick. My only issue is why did we have to wait 12 years for another Tribal Tech album? Please Scott and the guys - MORE PLEASE!! The advent of internet radio has widened your fan base. You need to accommodate us :-)
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Do you like your electric guitaring challenging, out there and ripping? Like a funky, pumping bass over rich, intelligent keyboards and muscular drumming? Then this is for you, but there is so much more. This is heavy jazz fusion with a bluesy progressive twist. Their style is unique but almost instantly recognisable when you hear their unison keyboard, guitar and bass lines - like an intense guitar-driven Weather Report. This description does no justice to these master jazz musicians who together melt and smoulder compositionally, who interact with an intuition of decades of playing together and vast experience with other bands. This is Tribal Tech.

Scott Henderson is a guitar chameleon - changing colours and shades with each new track yet always his inimitable sound always comes through. That sweet distorted legato scream that funnels into the dirtiest of tones that shift with each bebop line - his playing is endlessly fascinating. Without a doubt Henderson is one of the most amazing guitarists on the planet. In the opening track, 'Mech X' a menacing Hendrix-like crescendo of sound develops which intrigued me and had me concerned that perhaps a new more chaotic TT style was emerging. I am pleased to say that an avalanche of thundering carefully crafted typical TT unison lines power through - this is a powerful statement at the beginning of the album.

'Got Faith 'N Phat' is a classic grooving TT track with Scott Kinsey's keys sounding so much like a Tower of Power horn section that I looked at the liner notes to see who was playing. Gary Willis's bass is stunning - pulsing delicately in places and then pumping. Each new track he seems more impressive. His choice of notes and articulation is superb.
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I have all Tribal Tech, and all solo efforts, and some projects with members as side-men.

If you've heard Rocket Science, this album will sound very familiar. This is a plus and a minus. It's a plus, because these guys are awesome. Rocket Science is my favorite TT CD. Thick probably the next favorite. All their albums (and member's solo projects) are very good. It's a minus, because it sounds like a the red-headed stepchild of, or out-takes from, Rocket Science.

Any TT album, even their "worst" one, is going to put most other funk/fusion bands to shame. Henderson is one of the best electric guitarists ever (I think he's better than Hendrix and Stevie Ray were.). Willis is in my top two favorite bassists (The other is Percy Jones.). Kinsey's Kinesthetics is just about as good as any Weather Report album. And speaking of WR, a lot of their (and Zawinul's solo) albums sound pretty similar too, while still being great. So, take that into account.

If you require new, improved, groundbreaking TT, this isn't it. But, it's very good. I'm glad to have it complete my collection, but it simply pales in comparison to most of Henderson, Willis and Kinsey's solo projects (I wasn't totally wild about the last two solo Willis CDs, while Bent and No Sweat are amazing.).

Just my opinions.

And this is why I'm only giving it three stars... I'm grading on a curve. Contrasted to anything by U2 or Lady Gaga, I'd give it a million stars.
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What can I say? I LOVE these guys! I really enjoyed the brilliant arrangement of older tracks like Anthem (from Spears I think). As for the rest the Henderson/Willis combination aided and abetted by the Kinsey/Covington pairing makes for an incredibly powerful musical experience. Tight time signatures, brilliant playing (Gary is always inspired, I admit it, I am biased!). Less is more, but hey in that "less" there is SO much! Flawless technique but above all, such great taste! Yeah bring on more guys please, I DARE you to!
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