Somewhere in Space
Interplanetary Music No. 1
Interstellar Low Ways (Stereo)
Rocket Number Nine Take Off for the Planet Venus
Featuring material recorded in Chicago between 1957 and 1960, Interstellar Low Ways was originally released as Rocket Number Nine Take Off for the Planet Venus in 1966 and reissued with the current title in 1969. The bandleader was already looking to go beyond the relatively straight (for him) bebop, R&B, and blues he sometimes played during this era, aiming to create an outward-looking type of jazz that featured more original playing and tribal rhythmic underpinnings. “Somewhere in Space” and “Interstellar Low Ways” (featuring Marshall Allen and Pat Patrick on flute) are galaxies away from Ra’s more conventional swing or bop. The band members are also called upon for segments of chanting, as they do on “Rocket Number Nine” and “Interplanetary Music No. 1,” adding to the material's overall exotic feel. This isn’t to say that Ra left the old ways behind, with “Space Loneliness” being an exceptional blues and “Space Aura” a driving hard-bop gem that highlights the horn section's strengths. This is also all remastered from original source tapes using 24-bit transfers.