Menagerie – The Shores Of Infinity (ENG review)

Free Style – Available
Jazz Fusion

Menagerie, an Australian jazz group with a purely conceptual approach, comprised of nine members, enthusiastically announces the release of its fourth album titled “The Shores Of Infinity.” This marks the third album to be published by Freestyle Records for this Melbourne-based jazz ensemble, founded by producer, lyricist, guitarist, DJ, and recording artist Lance Ferguson (known for his work with The Bamboos, Lanu, Rare Groove Spectrum, Machines Always Win).
In a departure from the norm, Menagerie’s music falls somewhere between jazz and rock-fusion, presenting a captivating blend with a distinctly urban sound. The album aims to be both musical and spiritual, featuring only six tracks. It unfolds like a musical film, with a transversal infusion of African elements, primarily through rhythmic patterns and vocals. The group’s uniqueness is undeniably charming.
At Bayou Blue Radio, our goal is to bridge the gap between the past, present, and future of jazz. “The Shores Of Infinity” occupies a space between the present and future while respecting jazz traditions, utilizing brass instruments as a link between musical bridges. It is genuinely enjoyable to listen to, even dance-worthy, as the rhythms carry us through the tracks. Menagerie released their debut album, “They Shall Inherit,” in 2012 via Tru Thoughts, followed by “The Arrow Of Time” on Freestyle in 2018 and the acclaimed ‘Many Worlds’ in 2021.
Inspired by both the post-Coltrane generation of the ’70s and the current “New Wave of Jazz,” Menagerie has made waves internationally, receiving support from Worldwide FM, Jazz FM, and Jazzwise. They were nominated for Best Jazz Act at the 2021 Music Victoria Awards and performed at the prestigious Melbourne International Jazz Festival in 2022.
One can only hope that European festivals take an interest in this group, as the fusion of cultures is a driving force in contemporary jazz—a genre where Menagerie undeniably holds a significant place. Bayou Blue Radio and Paris-Move have deemed this album an “essential” addition to their collections.

Thierry De Clemensat
USA correspondent – Paris-Move
Editor in chief Bayou Blue Radio, Bayou Blue News

PARIS-MOVE, January 3rd 2024


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