Albert Ayler - Prophecy (1975), 6/10

These are themes clearly better executed and realized on Spiritual Unity, but still very successful and moving here. Prophecy simply suffers from its sound integrity and balance. There is still boundless passion and soul being delivered directly through the performances with no filler in each piece and supreme focus, seemingly always the case with Ayler. His delivery is as individual and telling of his character as ever, exhibiting many of his eccentricities that made his music special and groundbreaking in comparison with traditional jazz of the time and even other more elementary free jazz, considering its recording in 1964. Still, it is unavoidable to mention that Spiritual Unity was recorded less than a month later and is clearly a better rendition of Ayler’s ideas heard here. Sonny Murray and Gary Peacock do bring quite a broad set of effects to Ayler’s horn, however, and the conversational back and forth of their dynamics and tone is outstanding, giving it substantial value as its own experience. Sometimes these journeys work well, sometimes they leave something to be desired, but in majority are enjoyable and sometimes even thoroughly gratifying, especially the two variations of “Ghosts”. Basically, a looser variation of Ayler’s masterpiece that has its own identity in its varied, looser approach to interplay and organic live sound.