Forget about world music. That’s dead and buried forever since broadband internet became available to pretty much everyone that’s not in a third-world country. Sure, there’s still stuff to be discovered buried in some warehouse in a lost African city somewhere. In fact, that will never stop, because we get so easily bored with listening to the same thing twice these days.
The same goes for jazz – it’s everywhere. There’s a somewhat clear distinction between modern jazz and jazz from before the mid-70s in a way that it became a genre that lives too much for cerebral sensations. For that reason, it grew cold, losing the direct gateway to the soul it once had. Most of the time, that’s a sensation that worsens with jazz from northern European countries. It’s home for virtuous players who don’t speak to the soul. On the other hand, Europe, northern and otherwise have been breeding excellent mutant jazz music. Not speaking about The Heliocentrics, there’s that whole London jazz scene, and there’s a lot of great European freak jazz combos that are all heart in many countries, Belgium included.
Compro Oro are from Ghent, Belgium and fit easily with that crowd. Not because they sound like any one of those bands in particular, but because the feeling is similar in a way that they play like heirs of guys like Mulatu Astake. And since we’re namedropping, Joachim Cooder, son of Ry Cooder, plays in this.
After one EP and one full-length, Compro Oro are back with “Miami New Wave”, the premier for the upcoming Suburban Exotica to be released via Sdban Ultra on October 18. “Miami New Wave” plays like a continuity of the fortunate and happy bastardization of jazz with ethnic music, the same way The Heliocentrics do it. It’s warm and psychedelic blending tradition with experimentation in a gratifying and exciting way. And almost as good, their name not only lives up the sound, but it’s also perfect considering all the gold-buying shops that spawned everywhere in Europe, predating on needy people, usually immigrants. It doesn’t get more international than the spirit of Africa leading way to Miami, all the while rooted in Belgium.