Jagged spears of crystal thrust into the brain (or is it the heart?) elicit an agonizing howl, a cry, and a scream.
Thus opens Sun Ra’s 1973 adventure-mystery Crystal Spears. After a few minutes of a cathartic brawl between Minimoog and Yamaha combo organ, percussionists Atakatune and Odun enter while drummer Clifford Jarvis provides tonal textures, not rhythm, from the kit. Marshall Allen saunters in with a rather plaintive oboe, under which Ra later overdubbed (a rarity on an Arkestra recording!) a marimba.
But this momentary gentleness is soon disrupted by roaring electronic keyboards over waves of rollicking marimba devilishly chattering below the fray.