Kamasi Washington today graces us with the only news outside of Kendrick’s next album that could have us this damn excited! The Jazz saxophonist, bandleader and Kendrick collaborator has followed up on his 2015 debut album ‘The Epic‘ today revealing his ‘Truth’, a new fourteen-minute track visualised in a film and directed by A.G. Rojas.
‘Truth’ is the prelude to Kamasi’s first EP for Young Turks titled ‘Harmony Of Difference’ due to be released this summer, which also begins the start of his new global deal with the label joining the likes of The xx, Sampha, FKA twigs and more.
The music and film itself was initially premiered at the Whitney Biennial as part of an original six-movement Kamasi Washington suite titled ‘Harmony Of Difference’ which consists of “Desire,” “Humility,” “Knowledge,” “Perspective”, “Integrity” and “Truth”. The complete thirty-seven minute installation presents Kamasi’s music set to artwork and imagery by his sister Amani Washington, before culminating in Rojas’ ‘Truth’ film. Exhibiting at the Whitney Museum of American Art until the 11th June, ‘Harmony of Difference’ explores the philosophical possibilities of the musical technique known as “counterpoint,” which Washington defines as “the art of balancing similarity and difference to create harmony between separate melodies.”
Washington’s suite includes visual elements married to the musical works and draws voraciously on jazz for its foundation. Each of the first five movements is its own unique composition. ‘Truth,’ the sixth movement, fuses all five compositions into one complete movement with strings and chorus.
Amani Washington created five paintings focused on raw shapes and colors, each inspired by one of the first five movements of the suite. Amani then combined these paintings to create a sixth: an abstract depiction of a human face.
Take out 13 minutes today to draw breath and watch the beautifully shot abstract film, which features vignettes of people and places set in South Central and East Los Angeles. Includes are a boy with his mother; a girl and her family; young women dancing on a street corner; two men both wrestling in dance surrounded by flower petals.
Beyond the artistic impulse to expand the possibilities within counterpoint, Washington wanted to create something that opened people’s minds to the gift of diversity. In his own words, “my hope is that witnessing the beautiful harmony created by merging different musical melodies will help people realize the beauty in our own differences.”