Exposé Online banner

Gadi Caplan — Morning Sun
(Musea MP 3322, 2016, CD)

by Peter Thelen, Published 2016-08-07

Morning Sun Cover art

The last time I heard a release by this Israeli born Brooklyn NY based composer and multi-instrumentalist was his excellent 2011 release Opposite Views. Why it was never reviewed in these pages probably has more to do with the fact that our final printed edition had flown, and our new website was still under construction at the time; certainly nothing to do with the quality of the production, although to be accurate, his latest Morning Sun is a very different from that one and represents a big leap forward in all respects. The eleven tracks here represent a solid cross-section of Caplan’s numerous influences, which include jazz elements, classic progressive rock, psychedelic approaches, traditional Indian music, folky touches, and intelligent pop from the classic era. Most of the tunes herein were composed and arranged by Caplan in collaboration with singer and composer Danny Abowd, who handles all of the lyrics, vocals and vocal arrangements here, all superb, and was also a member of Caplan’s band The Weeping Willards. Caplan, for his part handles guitar, bass and synths, as well as the arrangements and production, while Willards’ bassist Jesse Gottlieb handled the engineering and mixing duties, as well as adding some backing vocals and trumpets. Other musicians feature on drums, strings, saxes, keyboards and bansuri flute. There are numerous highlights here, including the breezy “Island,” “Vivadi Swara,” which opens in a meditative mode and follows with an catchy uptempo acoustic driven tune with beautiful electric leads, the imagery driven “The Other Other Side,” the unforgettable title track featuring bansuri flutes flying over a bed of acoustic guitars, and the two instrumentals that open and close the album, “Hemavati,” and the ten-minute four-part epic “Lili’s Day,” but to be fair there isn’t a dull moment to be found anywhere on this disc. In many ways, as I listen to this I am often reminded of the late great Duncan Browne circa his 1973 self-titled album, or even a bit of Nick Drake. This is a definite grower; the more one listens to it, the more one will enjoy.


Filed under: New releases, 2016 releases

Related artist(s): Gadi Caplan

Latest news

2018-07-31
Tomasz Stańko RIP – Tomasz Stańko, one of the greats of Eastern European jazz, has died at the age of 76. Stańko's career started in Krzysztof Komeda's quintet, where he contributed trumpet from 1963-1967, when he formed his own group. He worked extensively with Edward Vesala, Don Cherry, Zbigniew Seifert, Chico Freeman, Howard Johnson, Cecil Taylor, and many others. Many of his recordings have been released by ECM, an association that began in the mid-70s. » Read more

2018-07-09
Soft Machine Set to Release New Music – It's been 50 years since The Soft Machine changed the face of music with their first album. Their blend of psychedelic rock and jazz was unique, and while the band went through many changes before disbanding in 1981 — by which time there were no original members remaining — they remained an innovative force with a style all their own. » Read more

2018-07-01
7d Surfaces Happy Rhodes Back Catalog – We've covered singer Happy Rhodes before, both for her solo work and recently with The Security Project, but her 11 albums have been hard to track down. Until now. 7d features high-quality downloads of all her releases, and several of them are also available on CD. » Read more

2018-06-25
Fred Chalenor RIP – We have news of another sad passing in the world of creative music. Bassist Fred Chalenor, whose creativity featured on albums by Tone Dogs, Caveman Shoestore, and many more, died on June 23, 2018 after a long battle with Alzheimer's. Tributes have poured in from the many musicians and fans whose lives he touched. » Read more

2018-06-13
Jon Hiseman RIP – One of the great drummers of the rock era has died. Jon Hiseman was a veteran of such ground-breaking groups as Colosseum (I and II), Tempest, John Mayal's Bleusbreakers, and was a founding member of the innovative large band United Jazz + Rock Ensemble. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Cast - Angels and Demons – I've been reading about Cast for a while in Exposé, but the arrival of this disc marks the first time I've actually heard them. So going into it, I knew they were a "symphonic...  (1998) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues