Feb 9, 2016
Those who think that jazz-rock fusion is gone should think again. If you listen to Naked Truth’s latest CD, Avian Thug, you would think it never left.
Naked Truth is a quartet composed of Lorenzo Feliciati (bass), Graham Haynes (trumpet), Roy Powell (keyboard, organ and synthesizers) and Pat Mastelotto (drums and percussion). All four augment their instruments with electronics and effects, and Feliciati is joined by Bill Laswell in post-production to add subtle but successfully arranged effects.
The spirit of Electric-era Miles hangs over the recording, especially the rhythmic complexities and textures of Bitches Brew. But this is no homage, nor does it borrow directly from that legendary recording. Rather, these four top improvisers have created music that captures the heart of that sound, but have made I most definitely their own. Haynes electric trumpet would be the easiest to call “Miles-esque”, but he goes beyond Davis’ legendary high-end stabs with
Feliciati, a veteran of six other RareNoise Record releases, takes his bass to a less restrictive and less stereotypical place. Not content to groove along, he moves
Podcast 520 is my conversation with Lorenzo as we discuss the varying incarnations of Naked Truth, how the band records (hint – not too many takes!) and the making of his well-received KOI CD. Musical selections include "Dancing with the Demons of Reality" from their CD Ouroboros; and "Lazy Elephant", “Rapid Fire” and the title track from Avian Thug.
In addition to my conversation with Lorenzo, I got to spend a few minutes with Pat Mastelotto as he prepared to leave his home in Austin for Europe. Naked Truth is another part of his musical evolution – from being a member of the top pop band Mr. Mister; to studio work with the likes of the Sugarcubes, Hall & Oates and XTC; to holding down a drum seat with some of the most important Progressive Rock bands of the past decades, King Crimson, the Flower Kings and KTU, and the Stick Men. He has played with fusion veterans like Eddie Jobson and Allen Holdsworth, and now anchors the rhythm section of Naked Truth.