album review: ERIMAJ

ERIMAJ

Conflicts of a Man

(DON’T CRY)

Jamire Williams is a busy man. The only drummers with fuller schedules are maybe Questlove and Chris “Daddy” Dave, and that they run in similar circles is only appropriate. Williams currently keeps time between Robert Glasper and Dr. Lonnie Smith, amid other session work. ERIMAJ began as an extra outlet for nights between other work. Williams and Corey King lead the group that includes bassist Vicente Archer, pianist Jason Moran and others. The album’s highlights stem from vocalist Chris Turner, who comes off as a restrained Bilal. Not many people can better a Tony Williams original, but “This Night, This Song” is turned from a deep album cut to a masterpiece. The disc’s final three cuts, the title song, “Social Life,” and “Choosing Sides,” combine for one of the finest suites you’ll listen to this year. — Damien McPherson

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