Bassist/composer Charles Mingus is one of the most radical figures in American music. This album broke new ground in both genre-defying composition and innovative recording techniques. A six-part suite with dramatic shifts in mood and tempo, the Black Saint and the Sinner Lady features the three-way brass dialogue of trumpets, trombone and tuba, swooping reeds and awe-inspiring rhythm section. Balancing delicate Spanish modes and Ellington like themes, the ensemble breaks into a divine cacophony of group improvisation on par with free jazz giants like Ornette Coleman or Cecil Taylor. In his best-known essay, "Psychotic Reactions and Carburetor Dung," Lester Bangs praises, "the experience of the first few listening's to a record so total, so mind-twisting, that you authentically can say you'll never be quite the same again. Black Saint and the Sinner Lady did that, and a very few others.