12 Inch LP
Part of Tele Music Reissue Campaign, 2023 first time reissue, 140g vinyl
Guy Pedersen, French jazz-soul-funk double-bass player extraordinaire, recorded Contrebasses in 1970 for Tele Music. It's one of the most outstanding - yet puzzlingly slept-on - releases in the library's catalogue. Forget library, this is basically a sublime, straight-up moody jazz record with monster breaks. It's brimming with sensational psychedelic/jazzy bass-heavy moments throughout; it's absolute gold.
"Indian Pop Bass" contains a deep, abstract breakbeat that intersects with a bassline that loops as if it sinks into the swaying, heavy, slow drums. The mysterious, deliberate "Prélude À Une Angoisse" is an eerie, magical number with ace effects whilst "Patio Bass" is a breezy deep jazz knockout with fantastic drums and a sashaying melody. "Tension Nerveuse" creates an atmosphere that's exactly as the title suggests, full of genuine suspense, rumbling percussion and deep drama jazz. "Amour, Délices Et Contrebasse" is a touch lightweight so you're advised to head to the much darker, peculiar funk of "Percussion Bass", bursting with imaginative sounds and effects. "Obsession Diabolique" closes out the A Side, with a funky walking bassline and sparkling percussion battling against droning strings to create a uniquely unsettling, beatless track.
Enlivening the B-Side immediately is the fantastic, propulsive funky-jazz of "Les Copains De La Basse". "Doucement La Basse" is largely forgettable but "Bass Session" is a blazing psych-jazz-rock burner. Absolutely thrilling. Equally, "Bass After Love" is devastatingly psychy, funky and unique. "Ballade Pour Une Basse" is a classic funky French jazz piece with an infectious bass melody that seems to anticipate "Before The Night Is Over", the Joe Simon track that Outkast sampled for "So Fresh, So Clean".
The audio for Contrebasses has been remastered by Be With regular Simon Francis, ensuring this release sounds better than ever. Cicely Balston's expert skills have made sure nothing is lost in the cut whilst the original, iconic Tele Music house sleeve has been restored here at Be With HQ as the finishing touch to this long overdue re-issue.