We Travel the Spaceways/Bad and Beautiful

Sun Ra

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We Travel the Spaceways/Bad and Beautiful Review

by Sean Westergaard

Much like Evidence's Fate in a Pleasant Mood/When Sun Comes Out two-fer, We Travel the Spaceways/Bad and Beautiful also features one album from the Chicago period and one from the New York period. The difference is that this New York session (Bad and Beautiful) is probably the first recording made in New York, and the overall sound is more closely tied to the Chicago sound than the later New York material, where rhythm and percussion dominated any melodic elements. The late Chicago period had the Arkestra still swinging, but moving beyond their swing and bop origins into more uncharted territory. We Travel the Spaceways marks the first appearance of the Space Chant, songs that would practically define the Arkestra in later decades. The pairing of We Travel the Spaceways and Bad and Beautiful captures an important transitional phase for the Arkestra, and makes a good starting point for the novice interested in Sun Ra.

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