Abstract Orchestra - Madvillain Vol. 1 (LP)
Coming off the back of their successful album of J Dilla interpretations (and a single with Dilla's younger brother, Illa J), this time Abstract Orchestra focuses on MF DOOM and Madlib's collaborative work as Madvillan. Led by Saxophonist Rob Mitchell, the UK group explores jazz, TV soundtracks and film scores, combined with classic big band writing and a focus on improvisation. A jazz album as much as it is a hip-hop album, Madvillain, Vol. 1 is explores the reciprocal territory between the genres. Taking the template of their debut LP "Dilla", they apply the same approach here, sampling the likes of Sun Ra, Bill Evans, Freddie Hubbard, George Duke, Dr. Lonnie Smith, Quincy Jones and Stevie Wonder, resulting in a jazz oriented feel and ethos which in turn lends perfectly to the deconstruction and re-imagining of Abstract Orchestra. As with their debut, all the tracks were recorded live in the studio with very few overdubs. The band itself is based on the classic jazz big band instrumentation of saxes, trumpets and trombones and features the cream of the north of England's jazz scene who collectively have played with Jamiroquai, Corinne Bailey Rae, Mark Ronson, Martha Reeves, John Legend & the Roots, Roots Manuva and Amy Winehouse.