DBA Recommends: Lifted
Lifted is a supergroup of sorts, comprising the talents of Max D, Motion Graphix and Co La at its core and in its wider orbit the contributions of Jeremy Hyman, Bass Clef and Jordan GCZ amongst others. The project debuted on Pan in 2015 with an LP that drew comparisons with artists like Typhonian Highlife and even the later work of Miles Davis. Since that debut, the group has recorded a sophomore LP for Pan and subsequently pieces in the puzzle of a third LP of which this emission, entitled 3.2, is the latest.
Since the first LP its clear that the ‘no holds barred’ approach has evolved further to a ‘burn all holds’ stance but the material is also highly listenable. The press release calls this outing “more a reorientation than a review,” and the same could be said of 3.3 which landed last year. Whereas the records for PAN drew from some obvious sources of inspiration, both 3.3 and 3.2 go a step further in foregrounding the more experimental aspects of the Lifted project. The hard bop horns are still there but they’re miles away in the distance while the keys lurch from side to side as if they are about to enter your brain and plant a flag on the frontal lobes.
A lot of 3.2’s innovation takes place in its use of rhythm. Whereas 3.3 deployed steady head nodding time signatures, 3.2 departs into a step entirely of its own, for example on Purplelight Beat which features the notorious trombone stylings of Bass Clef. Cushion Push is more restrained, occupying a similar rhythmic space to Moondog’s snake time concept, thanks to the drums of Jeremy Hyman. Cushion Beat settles into a driving breakbeat with a more defined groove to it which makes way for Jordan GCZ and Motion Graphix on the keys to take centre stage. Across the three tracks there’s plenty of detail and subtlety to have you coming back for more. Buy here.