Ezra Collective are dominating UK jazz. The group’s sophomore album ‘Where I’m Meant To Be’ is a glorious collection of tracks that demonstrate not only their striking musicality, but also their inherent camaraderie.
‘Where I’m Meant To Be’ begins with a chattering room. A pulsating saxophone leads into an immensely energetic percussion section. Sampa The Great’s feature provides an unrivaled vitality. Ezra Collective’s years of performing together are evident as tracks such as ‘Togetherness’ and ‘Victory Dance’ demonstrate a masterclass in call-and-response. Instruments communicating, their emotions as clear as if they were conversing. Ezra Collective enable jazz to be accessible, plainly showcasing the genre’s excitement.
On this record the group exhibts their craft. ‘Live Strong’ appears almost cinematic, with crying strings being comforted by a trumpet trying to derail the chaos. ‘Never The Same’ takes a somber approach. The elegant rise and fall of the combined trumpet alongside a glistening piano. The features on ‘Where I’m Meant To Be’ are carefully picked. Kojey Radical, Emeli Sandé and Nao expertly add to the already vibrant tracks. A striking interlude of band member TJ recalling an emotional interaction with a fan leads him to a revelation about the power of music. Ezra Collective have once again released an album that is hard to fault.
Words: Abbie Aitken
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