Punk and spoken word legend Patti Smith, along with the avant-garde jazz collective Soundwalk Collective, have announced a new album entitled Mummer Love, which will be released on November 8th via Bella Union. This upcoming project features Mulatu Astatke, along with Phillip Glass, and the Sufi Group of Sheikh Ibrahim, who make an appearance on the group’s first new track “Eternity.” The new album channels the work of Arthur Rimbaud, during the period when he was in Ethiopia, a large cultural center for Sufism.
This latest song blends many elements of avant-garde music that Glass is well known for, blending the style with Ethiopian Jazz, traditional Sufi lyricism and Smith’s voice. This track creates, an eclectic, albeit experimental experience bringing many different rare sounds together on a collaborative avant-garde piece.
“You obtain connections to other levels of yourself and consciousness,” Stephan Crasneanscki of the Soundalk Collective mentions of the musical process. “This connection, like poetry, is a universal language. A language of the soul, for the soul.”
“Because we are working with other people’s work, and not just reading it but channeling these people, they become a fourth mind. We are Rimbaud, you, I, and the work,” Smith began in a press release. She later followed with ““It makes me think of Rimbaud’s energy, his strong will. If we, the living, send out radio and energy waves, the energy of those last poems is still reverberating. It can’t be silenced, because we understand that this work and the artists are not dead, they find life when we are recording them.”
Check out our review of the Soundwalk Collective and Smith’s previous collaborative album The Peyote Dance, here.
Photo Credit: Alyssa Fried