Day 21: Brother’s Testament – Icarus Live at Jazz re:freshed


Day 21 of our 2020 charity Advent Calendar, in aid of You Make It & Project Protect.

There is a certain deftness to the way jazz fusion band, Brother’s Testament led by Munashe-Caleb Manyumbu, approach their writing. Whilst groove is very much central to the way the music is experienced; there is a certain knack for atmosphere and sense of theatre that connects their strong influences of hip hop, classical and more with natural ease.

Today’s track of surging synths and rollicking rhythm section segments, is a mastery in storytelling and virtuoso improvisation, all recorded live from a performance at London’s revered night for jazz past present and future, Jazz re:freshed.

“This was one of the first tracks I wrote, dating back to around September 2017, and was themed around the story of, you guessed it, Icarus.

There’s this feeling throughout the track that the ease of the A section isn’t going to last forever, and the whole track plays with a tension that eventually ends in Icarus’ demise as he (famously) plummets into the sun. The last-minute or so kind of documents his plummet, the period of time in which he knows he’s doomed, and can do nothing but wait for the sun to eat him up. A cautionary tale for the ages!”

Download & Donate

This year we’ve chosen to split profits from the release between two charities, both of whom are doing important work within their respective fields.

The first charity is London-based organisation You Make It, a creative programme that offers young women access to tools, networks and experiences — group learning, 1-1 mentoring, work experience, start-up support and 1-1 pastoral support — giving them the confidence to transform their lives through personal empowerment.

The second is Nigeria-based initiative Project Protect, a subdivision of Burna Boy’s charitable NGO The Reach, launched to help provide financial, medical and legal resources for EndSars protestors during and after the protests.

Check the below playlist for all tracks in our Calendar.

Artwork across the series by Mark Grieg.

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