Sun Ra Visits Planet Earth/Interstellar Low Ways is a great pairing of two classic Saturn LPs from the Chicago period. Sun Ra Visits Planet Earth was recorded in two sessions, one in late 1956 and the other in 1958. The first four tracks (from the 1956 sessions) are firmly grounded in bop and swing. The next three tracks are from the 1958 session, and find the Arkestra creating a more personal sound, with prominent tympani and elements of dissonance beginning to enter the picture. By the time of the 1960 sessions for Interstellar Low Ways, there was no one else in the Arkestra's league. Not only have the bandmembers picked up such instruments as the Solar Bells, Solar Drum, and Space Lute (!), but Space Chants like "Interplanetary Music" and "Rocket Number Nine Take Off for the Planet Venus" are being performed and recorded. Sun Ra Visits Planet Earth/Interstellar Low Ways shows the rapid development of the Arkestra during the Chicago years, and serves as an excellent summary of that period.
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AllMusic Review by Sean Westergaard