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Third World Love: Songs and Portraits

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Omer Avital can instigate a band like few bass players. He has quietly become an important bassist-bandleader in the tradition of Charles Mingus and Dave Holland. Avishai Cohen, with his tantalizing tart tone and well-formed fresh ideas, may be the most underrated trumpet player in jazz. They are two of the co-leaders here. The other essential members of this collective are pianist Yonatan Avishai and drummer Daniel Freedman. All except Freedman are originally from Israel.

Songs and Portraits is the fifth album by Third World Love. The press notes claim that the band has rock star status in Israel and routinely plays for 1,000-plus crowds that turn their concerts into raucous dance parties. No wonder. This music twitches and throbs with a life force that draws on diverse sources: Africa, Arabia, rock ‘n’ roll. Infectious, supple global grooves underlie bittersweet original melodies contributed by all four members of the band.

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