If [Tomorrow International, 1976]
If - Quite possibly the funkiest album ever recorded by saxophone legend Nathan Davis -- a sweet little session with plenty of electric touches! The sound here differs greatly from Davis' 60s work on the European scene -- his amazing albums for MPS and Polydor -- and the record's awash in funky drum breaks, rolling basslines, keyboard solos, and plenty of searing work on soprano, tenor, alto, and flute by Nathan himself! There's a spare, stripped-down brilliance to this album that makes it one of our favorite indie jazz albums ever -- a sense of groove that's apparent from the very first note, but also a righteous vision for arranging and composition that easily puts the set right up there with the best on the Strata East or Black Jazz labels! A few funky standouts on the record have been sampled heavily over the years, but the whole thing's great through and through -- and titles include "Tragic Magic", "New Orleans", "African Boogie", "Stick Buddy", and "Bahia".