Volcanic Tongue Catalogue

Joe McPhee
Undergroud Railroad

Bo'Weavil Recordings Weavil-51


Edition of 500 copies reissue of this free jazz masterpiece from 1969: McPhee is a versatile multi-instrumentalist who has forged his own circuitous route through the jazz underground since his blazing debut on Clifford Thornton’s Freedom & Unity back in 1967.  In recent years his profile has been higher than ever thanks to fruitful associations with younger players like Chris Corsano, Hamid Drake and Mats Gustafsson as well as with Peter Brotzmann but most of his early recordings, released on his own CjR imprint, have long been unavailable.  Underground Railroad was the first release under his own name and it’s a primitive whirlwind of a session, with drummer Ernest Bostic sounding like a fleet of steam rollers behind McPhee’s catastrophically powerful horn.  This is a cataclysmic recording, one that lurches between primitive field holler force, walls of tribal percussion and hurricanes of weeping brass. CjR was also one of the earliest artists-run private press free jazz imprints and the restoration of alla its earliest releases is a major public service. Highly recommended.