Jaimie Branch has been making huge waves with her album Fly or Die II for the International Anthem label and her evolution from trumpeter to bar spitting band leader is nothing short of staggering. She plays the London Jazz Festival on November 22nd at Church Of Sound in the capital.
Branch’s debut Fly or Die was dubbed one of the “Best Albums of 2017” by The New York Times, Los Angeles Times, NPR Music, WIRE, Stereogum, Aquarium Drunkard, and more. The new album was mostly written while on her first European tour with her debut in November 2018 and recorded in the studio at Total Refreshment Centre and live at Café OTO in London. Branch’s progressive composition has been taken to new heights and her also stepping forward as a vocalist for the first time has provided a scintillating new aspect.
nuevo roquero estéreo is the third single from FLY or DIE II: Bird Dogs Of Paradise. The tune starts with cellist Lester St Louis blowing out a heavy funky solo bass line, until the whole ensemble (augmented by an arsenal of analogue synths) explodes into the mix, scoring the soundtrack to what Branch calls “a night out with some aliens at the space club”.
The track fades out on an homage to Fly or Die I‘s A-side-closer leaves of glass bells and whistles.
On the new album, highlights include the epic opening opus prayer for amerikkka pt.1 and 2 when we hear Branch call out “a bunch of wide-eyed racists” between searing trumpet ad libs atop a massive, down-tuned blues. On the album’s closing track love song (for assholes & clowns) she laughs in their faces – an unhinged, unflinching, mix of anger and humour. Branch’s instrumental chronicles are also masterpieces.
Branch is a gifted and unique performer, her forthcoming concert will be a demonstration of this.