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The Matthew Herbert Big Band - The Yesness

Odd chap, Matthew Herbert. He made a name for himself doing dance music, but he's also worked in ballet, film scores and pop. His new album One Pig sees him making an album derived from the birth, life and death of a single pig. A concept album? Not quite. One Pig is not just a studio exercise from one man, a tape recorder and a sampler. No, the pig played a much more physical role in the production, with Herbert fashioning instruments from the beast's bones and skin. It's a challenging work, and one I've yet to come to terms with.

So rather than give you a half-arsed opinion about it, here's something a little easier: a real big band playing real swing music. The Yesness strikes me as a tribute to co-operation and positivity. After all, you're not going to get this music made any other way. Storming vocals from Eska Mtungwazi, on this track from the 2008 album There's Me and There's You.

The Matthew Herbert Big Band - The Yesness
(alternate download)