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JIM CAMPILONGO/Orange: Destined to be a hall of fame shredder, this guitar man projects a fusillade of sounds that range from Zappa inspired to Chet Atkins inspired and he manages to make it all his own. Guitar music thatís not for the faint of heart, this is a master blaster kind of ax man and itís for the kind of listener that likes his shredder to sound like a power trio even if heís the only one out there. High octane stuff that keeps the Hendrix tradition alive and well.

PLUNGE/Dancing on Thin Ice: Funky jazz trio from Nawlins follows the local tradition as well as the groove tradition in flying contemporary fashion. Approaching the groove from all angles from cool to hot, this gang knows how to hit the right notes, no matter in which direction they decide to bend them. Much more of a NYNO fusion than Britney Spears hoped to achieve with her restaurant, this is the now sound of cool really doing itís thing.

ANTOINETTE MONTAGUE/Behind the Smile: An unabashed throwback to the golden age of super club chanteuse jazz vocalists, Montague gets a real crew of pros behind her again and fearlessly tackles a wide range of material from jazz to blues to soul, bringing it all home enviably. A dandy dose of sophisticated sass, this is custom made for up market swingers of any generation.

MANDOMORPHOSIS/2010: Right from the opening licks, youíd think you are listening to any of the established mandolin outfits or players. These cats rock right in the pocket. Progressive bluegrass ala the Bela Fleck ilk with energy and good vibes for all that just keeps coming, this is certainly a winner for adult ears on the prowl for something new and different. These are cats you are sure to hear more from whether en group or en solo, and from the sound of this, your ears have a rosy future on tap. Hot stuff that just doesnít wear out itís welcome.

JEB PATTON/New Strides: A right on young swinger with the Heath Brothers backing him up as well? What did I do to deserve this? What did he do to deserve this? Wow! A classic swinging piano man that sounds like he was as bitten by the whorehouse vibe as hard as I was, Iím engaged and enthralled. Fashions come and go but stride piano should be front and center as long as there are practitioners that know how to turn it out like this. You like jazz piano? Youíll love this trio plus date that just tears the roof off the sucker and never letís the good times stop. Well done.
221 (Piano Series)

MYSTIC HARMONY/Mystic Christmas: Good Lord, put down that hokey Wal*Mart collection of Celtic Christmas treasures as recorded by the sound machine and head over hear for the real thing for a traditional, Celtic Christmas that takes you back to the unheralded treasures that came out regularly on earnest, well meaning artist run companies that flew under the Narada/Windham Hill radar. Killer, old fashioned stuff that is certainly Celt inspired but goes a little farther a flied as well. A lovely example of how nice the deep traditional stuff can sound when performed by singers and musicians that really love what they do. Check it out.

DANA HALL/Into the Light: Working out with Terell Staffordís crew in tow, this sounds like a date that would have been right for Maxjazz if it wasnít so left leaning. A well traveled drummer that knows how to give the rest of the crew some, Hall has an affinity for civil rights era jazz but plays it like heís in the present looking forward rather than standing still on the progressive shores of 1964. A first class set of sitting down jazz, Hallís long over due solo debut finds his chops impeccably groomed and fully able to command the core in grand style. Let that late night blue smoke rise.

TIM MILLER/Sessions Lamar: Nick Drake may be dead and not coming back unless another commercial discovers him, but until he does come back, Drake fans can please themselves with Miller and his new batch of songs and remixes.

Volume 33/Number 13
November 13, 2009
830 W. Route 22 #144
Lake Zurich, IL., 60047
CHRIS SPECTOR, Editor and Publisher
©2009 Midwest Record

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