Tom Skinner (The Smile, Sons of Kemet) preps ‘Voices of Bishara’ – listen to “Bishara”

Tom Skinner, drummer in The Smile and Sons of Kemet (who just broke up), has announced new album Voices of Bishara which will be out November 4 via Brownswood Recordings/International Anthem/Nonesuch Records.

The album's title is a reference to cellist Abdul Wadud’s 1978 solo album By Myself, which was privately pressed on Wadud’s label, Bisharra, and the word means "good news" or "bringer of good news" in Arabic. The album features Kareem Days (cello), Nubya Garcia (tenor saxophone and flute), The Invisible's Tom Herbert (acoustic bass) and Sons of Kemet leader Shabaka Hutchings (tenor saxophone and bass clarinet). Here's more on the album's unique birth via the label:

‘Voices of Bishara’ began life when Tom Skinner asked some musician friends to join him for a Played Twice session at London’s Brilliant Corners. The regular event had a simple format: play a classic album in full through their audiophile system and then have an elite ensemble improvise their response. The night in question focused on drummer Tony Williams’ 1964 Blue Note album ‘Life Time’ and the music he and his friends conjured up was so special that it inspired Skinner to write an albums-worth of phenomenal new music.

“This record is an attempt to put something truthful into the world, through collaboration and community, at a time of rising dishonesty and disinformation,” says Skinner. “Bishara is the bringer of good news, and by bringing the musicians on this album who are very dear to me together, we pay homage to that idea by collectively spreading light where there is increasing darkness.”

You can listen to the album's opening track, "Bishara," below.

Meanwhile, Tom also features on Beth Orton's new song, "Fractals," that's on her anticipated new album Weather Alive. The track also features jazz poet Alabaster dePlume, Tom Herbert, and Shahzad Ismaily. Beth says the song was inspired by the deaths of Andrew Weatherall and Hal Willner. “The track is a beautiful example of the nature of collaboration, where people come in as they are,” says Orton. “You’re hearing the first take. I would never have been able to conjure that music without these musicians.” You can listen to that below as well.

Tom will be on tour with The Smile this fall.

tom skinner - voices of bishara

Voices of Bishara:
1. Bishara
2. Red 2
3. The Journey
4. The Day After Tomorrow
5. Voices (of the Past)
6. Quiet as it’s Kept