Thursday, March 18, 2004

Vernon Reid / Masque - May 4th

Living Colour guitarist Vernon Reid will release a new album with his band Masque, "Known Unknown," May 4 via Steve Vai's Favored Nations label. The set features reinterpretations of Thelonious Monk's "Brilliant Corners" and Lee Morgan's "Sidewinder" alongside originals such as "Down & Out In Kigali and Freetown," "Outskirts" and "Flatbush & Church." DJ Logic guests on the cut "Voodoo Pimp Stroll."

Living Colour is currently on tour in Europe. Reid will hit the road with Masque in North America upon his return, with shows currently set for May 20 in Boston, May 22 in Rochester, N.Y., and May 24 in Victoriaville, Quebec.

-- Jonathan Cohen, N.Y.

Vernon Reid / Masque - Known Unknown

Guitar whiz Vernon Reid, best known for his work with Living Colour, has signed with the Favored Nations label, which has set a May 4 release date for the new Vernon Reid & Masque album "Known Unknown."

Reid recorded the set over the last two years, between touring and other commitments. In a statement, Reid said that the album contains a mix of originals and "fractured standards," like the band's take on Thelonious Monk's "Brilliant Corners" and Lee Morgan's "Sidewinder."

Reid is currently touring with Living Colour in Europe. He'll open a Masque tour when he returns; confirmed dates so far include May 20 in Boston (Johnny D's), May 22 in Rochester, NY (Montage Grille), and May 24 in Victoriaville, Quebec (Colisee Des Bois-France).

Vernon Reid & Masque Unveil Known Unknown, Debut CD for Favored Nations due out on May 4
Living Colour Guitarist Revisits Downtown New York Roots

Vernon Reid & Masque Unveil Known Unknown, Debut CD for Favored Nations due out on May 4

NEW YORK, NY (PRWEB) March 12, 2004 -– Vernon Reid, best known as guitarist/songwriter in the band Living Colour, has signed with Favored Nations and is preparing for the May 4 street date of his latest “solo” project, Known Unknown.

In fact part of the band Vernon Reid & Masque, Reid makes a departure from the vocal rock outings of Living Colour, hearkening back to his origins in the New York avant garde scene – smashing musical preconceptions and conventions.

It is this Vernon Reid who has collaborated with such greats as Public Enemy, Mick Jagger, Carlos Santana and The Roots; who produced albums by James “Blood” Ulmer and Salief Keita; and composes soundtracks for film, theater and dance.

Reid’s signature scratch and growl guitar opens the album’s title track. From there, he gears to deliver the Bitches Brew improvisational freak-out of “Down & Out In Kigali and Freetown.” In the “Outskirts,” he turns to surf guitar and modal jazz. Finally, in “Flatbush & Church,” he brings it back to the Vernon Reid that many fans know. Reid is the chief architect behind this innovative sonic landscape – he is part guitar player and part visionary artist.

Reid recorded Known Unknown in New York over as two-year period between touring and other commitments. It’s composed of nuanced studio sessions and live takes. It contains both originals and what Reid calls “fractured standards” like the band’s treatment of Thelonious Monk’s “Brilliant Corners” and Lee Morgan’s “Sidewinder.” According to Reid, “I think of Masque as a component part of my life’s expression.”

Known Unknown draws in on the New York underground’s finest players. Both Hank Schroy (bass) and Leon Gruenbaum (keyboards including the custom-built Samchillian Tip Tip Tip Cheeepeeeee) have worked with Reid since Masque’s debut album, Mistaken Identity. Drummer Marlon Browden comes fresh from recent work with jazz guitar legend John Scofield. Together, the three are a fearsome force who at once act as tour guides through this strange Unknown world.

They are joined by Downtown mainstay DJ Logic, who provides cuts and scratches for the groove-heavy “Voodoo Pimp Stroll.”

Reid and Favored Nations founder (and guitar legend) Steve Vai have been friends for years and both are thrilled to have Masque as part of the label’s lineup. Says Reid, “Steve is astounding in ways words can’t articulate.”

Living Colour remains together and Reid is presently on tour with the band through Europe. When he returns, Masque will begin to tour North America.

Early dates include the following with many more to follow:

May 20 - Boston, MA - Johnny D's
May 22 - Rochester, NY - Montage Grille
May 24 – Victoriaville, QUE - Colisee Des Bois-france

For more information on Vernon Reid & Masque, please contact:
Cary Baker (818) 986-5200

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