Kassa Overall presents his latest album 'Animals' where he pushes his kaleidoscopic, subversive vision further. The title a loaded metaphor for the paradoxes of his life as an entertainer and as a black man in America. 'Animals' is the sound of an artist aware of the cost of embodying one’s natural self in the public eye, a deep reckoning with the two-sided truth that to perform one’s freedom for an audience can mean succumbing to life inside a cage.
He layers Roland 808s against avant-garde drumming in the vein of his mentors Elvin Jones and Billy Hart. Virtuoso musos appear alongside rap poets; top-flight jazz improvisation weaves in and out of orchestral string arrangements.
Kassa’s all-star band includes the Detroit native Ian Finkelstein, who plays keys with Shigeto, Karriem Riggins, and Common; Haitian-American percussionist Bendji Allonce, son of Kompa legend Herman Nau who has worked with Miley Cyrus, Ms. Lauryn Hill, and Roberta Flack; and Tomoki Sanders (they/them), a multi-instrumentalist from Japan and New York who plays a saxophone given to them by their father, the great Pharoah Sanders.