Ten years after Seattle-based DIY jazz sensation Industrial Revelation came swinging into being, the powerful combo of D’Vonne Lewis, Evan Flory-Barnes, Ahamefule J. Oluo, and Josh Rawlings have delivered their most realized document to date: Liberation & the Kingdom of Nri. A couple ideas that had been gestating turned into unexpectedly tight demos turned into the unexpected tumbling-out of a pile of their best work to date—just as a year-long swell in the group’s profile (taking The Stranger’s 2014 Genius Award for music, for one) saw the quartet playing and wordlessly communicating on a new level. A humble, understated grandeur is a quality they all share, a commitment to exploration, not of some nebulous outer limits, but inner depths most shy from and deny. It’s the literal unearthing of those depths’ bounty that even inspired the album name. The centuries-ahead-of-their time bronze artifacts found in Igbo-Ukwu (a region of what’s now Nigeria) by accident in the first half of the 20th century were made with such advanced techniques that European (and Eurocentric) historians refused to believe they could in fact be the work of the Nri, a thousand-year-old nation unique in history in that they grew not by war, but by voluntary allegiance—including rejects and ex-slaves. Treasures of antiquity, a people’s legacy, the assaults of white hegemony—liberation.
– Larry Mizell Jr.
Evan Flory-Barnes (Upright Bass)
D'Vonne Lewis (Drums, Vocals on "Introduction: Mighty Nation")
Ahamefule J. Oluo (Trumpet, Clarinet, Bass Clarinet, Percussion, Effects)
Josh Rawlings (Fender Rhodes, Piano, Synthesizer, Accordion)
Grace Love (Vocals on "First Dance," "Introduction: Mighty Nation," "There's a Fire"
Jeff Coffin (Saxophones on "No Way Out but In"
Alex Guy, Brianna Atwell, and Maria Scherer Wilson (Strings on "HYPED!")
Jeff Busch (Percussion on "PopKing")
Thione Diop (Tama on "Man from Obibi")
Jon Hansen (Tuba on "Voice Memo: Beautiful")
Produced by Industrial Revelation and Ahamefule J. Oluo
Recorded at Robert Land Studios, Oak Head, and Dub Narcotic Studios
All compositions by Industrial Revelation
Engineered by Homero Gonzalez, Sam Anderson, Ahamefule J. Oluo, and Paul Krogh
Edited by Ahamefule J. Oluo
Mixed by Josh Evans, Sam Anderson, and Evan Schiller
Mastered by Homero Gonzalez
Cover art, "After another visit from Sirius B," by Maikoiyo Alley-Barnes, photographed by Futsum Tsegai
Band photo by Kelly O
Liner notes by Larry Mizell Jr.
Layout and design by Emily Nokes and Ahamefule J. Oluo