This is “raw like sushi”.

Village Underground, London 2012 [no label, 1CD]

Live at the Village Underground, London; July 15, 2012. Broadcast on BBC Jazz On 3, Jan 7, 2013. Ex FM stereo.

This is uncharted territory – singing in a free jazz band. The band are The Thing.

The Thing is a Norwegian/Swedish jazz trio, of well-known free jazz players Mats Gustafsson (saxophones), Ingebrigt Håker Flaten (double bass), and Paal Nilssen-Love (drums). Formed in 2000, the trio recorded Don Cherry compositions and are influenced by James Blood Ulmer, Frank Lowe, PJ Harvey, White Stripes and Joe McPhee. Musicians who have joined the Thing for recording and performances include Joe McPhee, Ken Vandermark, Otomo Yoshihide, Thurston Moore, Jim O’Rourke and Jeb Bishop. (wikipedia)

The singer is Don Cherry’s daughter.

Neneh Cherry is a Swedish singer-songwriter, rapper, and occasional DJ and broadcaster. Blending hip hop with other influences, Cherry experienced mainstream success with several of her recordings most notably, Raw Like Sushi. (wikipedia)

The track that works best is “Dirt” – a longish instrumental intro before Cherry comes in singing the lyrics of The Stooges song. Punk meets free jazz in a dark alley. Otherwise, it does lean to an R ‘n’ B singing style, Cherry does rap a little (“Accordion”, “Call The Police”). Thankfully, the screams pioneered by Yoko in ’69 are absent.

The loud, amplified sound of this concert add to the chaos. Like cream on cake. This performance covers every track off their debut collaboration except for “What Reason Could I Give”. On balance, we say go buy the CD.

With thanks to TomP who shared this on Dime and fastone for the fine artworks.

Track 01. Garage/Too Tough To Die* [8:53]
Track 02. Dream Baby Dream* [Alan Vega/Martin Rev 7:46]
Track 03. Golden Heart* [Don Cherry 7:43]
Track 04. Sudden Moment* [Gustafsson 7:44]
Track 05. Cashback* [Neneh Cherry 6:29]
Track 06. Dirt* [The Stooges 8:28]
Track 07. Announcer/Accordion* [Daniel Dumile 7:23]
announcer talks over the first 15 seconds
Track 08. Call The Police [Stephanie McDee 9:28]

* Studio versions can be found on the album The Cherry Thing.

Neneh Cherry – vocals
Mats Gustafsson – saxophones and electronics
Ingebrigt Håker-Flaten – bass and electronics
Paal Nilssen-Love – drums

Click here for the tracks.