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now is rising
Now Is Rising
(2005) CD - Limited Collector's Edition 250 copies

"It's time to welcome another offering from Earth People, one of the most innovative and exciting groups on today's avant garde scene. The group excels once again with the absolutely fresh Now Is Rising, a soulful amalgam of sound that showcases the group's versatality and formidable gifts."
- Florence Wetzel
(All About Jazz NY)

Read the entire Florence Wetzel review.

Click to listen before you buy.

Produced by André Martinez, Jason Candler & Doug Principato
Recorded in New York City at the Institute - October 2004
Chief engineer - Ivan Evangelista
Mixed by Ivan Evangelista with Earth People
Additional production at Loho Studios
Mastered by Jason Candler

"Sobbing Soldier in Iraq (A Useless Effort)" painting by André Martinez
courtesy of Henry Gregg Gallery
Photos by Greg Principato, Brenda Brenner, Doug Principato
CD layout and website by Jason Candler

All songs by Earth People except:
(3) Principato, Martinez, Candler, Levin
(5,7) Principato, Martinez, Candler.
Improv lyrics (1,5) by M

1 … Red Clay (11:43)
2 … Small Distraction Mass Confusion (13:33)
3 … Now Is Rising (10:55)
4 … M Train Samba (3:21)
5 … Time To Vote! (11:51)
6 … Sweet Peas (10:31)
7 … Draft Dodger (7:41)

André Martinez - drums, steel drum, cocktail set & percussion
Doug Principato - guitar, vocals & keyboards
Jason Candler - alto saxophone & guitar
Mark Hennen - piano
Francóis Grillot - contrabass
Elliott Levin - flute, tenor sax, vocals (1,3,5,7)
Sabir Mateen - alto & tenor sax, alto clarinet
M - vocals (1,5)
Firehorse - electronics (1,3,5,7)
Ricardo Solis - congas (2,4,6)

special guests:
Darlene Martinez - chant vocals (3)
Melanie Hayes - chant vocals (3)

Click to view, CTRL-click to download.

Florence Wetzel
All About Jazz NY / Oct. 2005
Ollie Bivins
All About Jazz LA / Dec. 2005

Robert Iannapollo
Cadence / Aug. 2007

NOW IS RISING by Doug Principato
It's hard to breathe
As ashes hit the sea
Once felt the land as a playground
Ancient spirits waking up sound
FIGHT all demons
Ones in the sky scheming
To take the sun from tomorrow's children
Ones in your mind keep changing
A positive retribution is needed

Glory glory individuality
Sand can't burn a desert's heart
Cause it used to be the sea
Shadows bloom in a vacancy
Never retire poverty
TV god monster
Makes us unresponsive
This place is like the Colosseum
Treating reality like it's in a museum

OLD NEWS by Elliott Levin
Good God! all un-Ransomed and Hankered
like a Beef Hearty tele-Capt.-(shun)-phoned
exclamatory sound byte... No less profound
or relevant some thirty-five-or-so-Sept-re-members
re-moved... "Eli!...Eli!"... Old boy Yale yell
cult clubbing our heads and hearts- throbbed
and drubbed senseless, like so many baby (bobby) seal(e)s...
Tied, cuffed, and gagged, and
tired, fucked, and bagged-
in a no win- no way out/no way in
situation... As unpromisingly unfriendly,
somber and bleak, or, as a 3 AM
Septumber Sunday America Ave.
at Bleecker;  week-ender bender...
Honeymooners bumper to fender for the
Afro-BLACK-Ire-land HUMOUR
pretender to a new- and as of yet
far from im- or un- proved cast,
for the same old story.

by Chris Forbes
It was all in place for magic in the studio! The varied members of Earth
People were wailing in spontaneous creativity. Elliott Levin’s sax was hitting
screaming heights. The percussive rhythm section was swirling, and above it all,
M was raising the spirits. The sounds coming into the control room of the
audio school were indeed electric to any who were open to the magic.
Unfortunately, not all people are ready for magic. This album is a document
of what was almost another tragedy in progressive music. This disc’s music
was nearly destroyed, like the legendary television tapes of Albert Ayler or Trane.

In early October 2004, Earth People had been offered a verbal contract
for three recording sessions and two mixing sessions at an educational
institution for audio recording. During the first two sessions, for which I
was present, there was no inkling of a problem. The music was hot and
the sessions seemed to go smoothly to all of us. But in the control room,
it was a different story. The students of the school, raised on hip hop and
pop music, were initially baffled and finally contemptuous of the music.
In a classic “wag the dog” situation, they wrote a petition demanding
that the sessions cease and they be allowed to go back to “good” music.
The school caved into the student demands and cancelled the contract
with Earth People. They offered the band a poor mix of the material that
had been recorded, and refused to release the masters. At one point they
even threatened to destroy the entire two days of recording. After months
and months of negotiation, the school administration agreed to give the
sessions a proper mix. Thankfully, this has resulted in this current album,
possibly the group’s finest to date.

The present album reflects the times in which it was created and even
more the time in which we now live. A streak of protest is mingled with a
creation-centered spiritual viewpoint resulting in a potent brew of outrage
and love. Red Clay finds the group in a groove reminiscent of early 70s
Pharoah Sanders, with M as the focal point. Small Distraction Mass
Confusion is an all out free jazz jam, dominated by the wild altissimo
blowing of Sabir Mateen. The third track, Now Is Rising, is a departure
for the group, at least on record. It features a spoken word performance
by guitarist Doug Principato, a Gregorian style chant by the band, and
an almost Captain Beefheartish poem by Elliott Levin, all tinged with
protest and outrage at the state of the world. M Train Samba features
Mark Hennen in an amazing piano solo…and in a mix in which you can
finally hear his incredible skill on the instrument. Thematically, Time To
Vote! may be the centerpiece of the album. It contains all the urgency
and sense of purpose that drove the last election, and now, in the wake
of continuing bad news in Iraq and the hurricane disaster in the Gulf,
it takes on an even more ironic edge. Sweet Peas is a wonderful little
breather. Starting as a take on a Monk tune it slowly morphs into
something that resembles a 60s Blue Note classic. The track is a
particularly good example of the band’s method of “spontaneous
composition”, as you can hear the piece literally come together in the
playing of it. The final tune, Draft Dodger, is all out rock in the manner
of Hendrix but with a typical Earth People twist.

This album will take you on an incredible journey. And it’s even more
precious knowing that it was snatched from destruction through the
determined dedication of band members and their passion for this music.
We listeners are blessed indeed to hear this, the next evolution of
Earth People.

Chris Forbes
Cosmik Debris Magazine
September 2005