Your Queen Is a Reptile signals the arrival of Caribbean-born, London-based saxophonist/clarinetist Shabaka Hutchings' Sons of Kemet on Impulse! The band's unusual lineup -- saxophone/clarinet, tuba, and two or three drummers -- fits with the historic label's revolutionary tradition forged by John and Alice Coltrane, Pharoah Sanders, etc. Hutchings is no mere descendent of his heroes, however. Over nine years he's amassed dozens of musical credits (including work with Mulatu Astatke and Yusef Kamaal) and leads three different bands: Sons of Kemet, Shabaka and the Ancestors, and the electro space-jazz outfit Comet Is Coming.
American jazz has often been described as an accumulation of cultural memory--music that survives by staying in touch with its own history. But the music of Shabaka Hutchings, the 33-year-old saxophonist and bandleader of London's Sons of Kemet, insists that memory isn't enough. Hutchings is a fixture in many projects, including cosmic jazz trio the Comet Is Coming, Afrofuturist outfit the Ancestors, and occasionally as a guest player with the Sun Ra Arkestra.