Melvin Sparks – Spark Plug (1971/2022) [FLAC 24bit/192kHz]

Melvin Sparks - Spark Plug (1971/2022) [FLAC 24bit/192kHz] Download

Melvin Sparks – Spark Plug (1971/2022)
FLAC (tracks) 24 bit/192 kHz | Time – 37:27 minutes | 1,46 GB | Genre: Jazz
Studio Masters, Official Digital Download | Front Cover | © Craft Recordings

The early-to-mid ’70s found Prestige Records expanding their purview beyond the blues-based soul-jazz that had become their calling card in the late ’60s. Releases from the likes of Idris Muhammad that incorporated more free-jazz and spiritual-jazz elements were reflective of the era’s revolutionary vibes. Nonetheless, the label’s bread and butter still unquestionably laid with funky, soulful, I-IV-V jams from some of the genre’s best and most dependable players. Few in the Prestige stable were as steadily soulful as guitarist Melvin Sparks, whose hollow-bodied guitar appeared on nearly a dozen albums between 1970 and 1971, including Spark Plug, the second of three albums he would record as a leader for the label. This set, like many of his others, breaks little new ground, but what it lacks in innovation it more than makes up for in pure, funky appeal. Generally laid-back, the set is dominated (obviously) by Sparks’ fluid guitar work and some highly complementary organ playing by Leon Spencer and Reggie Roberts. Idris Muhammad is also here, setting aside the cosmic spiritual groove of his then-current solo work for his legendary in-the-pocket rhythms. The guitar-organ-drums trifecta does the majority of the lifting, making this a rhythm-and-groove forward session in which horns are sparingly employed. However, when they do show up—such as Virgil Jones’ crystalline trumpet harmonies on “Who’s Gonna Take the Weight?” (a Kool and the Gang cover) or Grover Washington’s luscious sax on the album’s title track—they are employed to great effect. Even when the horns are blowing strong, this is still Sparks’ show, and on that title track as well as the others, he is quick to flex his skills, running off dizzyingly fast guitar lines in a technically impressive but breezily natural fashion.


1-1. Melvin Sparks – Who’s Gonna Take the Weight? (09:21)
1-2. Melvin Sparks – Spark Plug (08:48)
1-3. Melvin Sparks – Conjunction Mars (08:11)
1-4. Melvin Sparks – Alone Together (04:17)
1-5. Melvin Sparks – Dig Dis (06:48)


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