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FLYJACK/New Day: Moore Jazzy Jeff than Jerry Jeff, this Austin bunch of white boys with the funk might be celebrating the 70s with their sound, but they aren't celebrating it in Luckenbach. High octane funk and roll, these cats keep Mother's Finest as their ace in the hole and give the party the kick start it needs. Fun stuff that does hold a few messages along the way but their main message is to kick out the jams ya jamf. The cats here know there's no shame in letting it hang out that James Brown is one of your main influences---especially if you built on that base.

JAMIE KALLESTAD/In the Belly of the beast: The row's not any easy one to hoe these days so you have to give Kallestad credit for leaving his comfort zone to try and conquer the new paradigm. Releasing a few songs every few months rather than trying to save it up for one big burst, he's building the tribe and creating interest one fan at a time. Following in the footsteps of the last great Minnesota bard, this singer songwriter isn't covering the same ground twice other than putting himself out there as a singer/songwriter. This new batch has a bunch of alty.goodies on board and can be accessed via his website. Rising the nu wave indeed. This cat has a lot on the ball.

OAK HOUSE/Hot or Mood: The next generation of Athens, GA malcontents lets you know how sucky the world is and bets that college radio will cover their bet. Three pissed off pieces make a racket that sounds like contemporary dorm hallways.

BILL BROVOLD & JAMIE SAFT/Serenity Knolls: Two hell raisers get together to explore their ECM side and name their collaboration after the rehab center where Jerry Garcia died. What would you expect? Label spark plug Saft just brings two guitars and Brovold one and the nearly ambient by way of stripped down Aaron Copland is on a roll. Join Tom and Huck as they raft down the mighty Mississip on soporifics as they listen to John Fahey in a laid back stage. If you followed all that, you're sure to get it.

JU/Summa: Ambient progressive jazz? Those wacky Hungarians and their pals! Following up on their last pairing, the band and it's fellow travelers serve up a tasty treat for jazz malcontents that like it left leaning but not with the wheels rolling off the rails. Certainly out of the ordinary for the out of the ordinary.

RED BARAAT/Bhangra Pirates: If you haven't experienced these mash up masters yet, now is the time to quit wasting time. After a two year lay off from the studio to tour and write, they've expanded their sound and membership yielding a wild nu jazz/world mash up that is restricted by nothing. Totally fresh, this is the sound of so many streets at once, you'll probably get whip lash trying to keep up with it all. A mind blower for open ears looking for new stuff, you're going to have to drop your jaw in amazement when you give this the time of day. Hot stuff throughout.

SARA PETITE/Road Less Traveled: By way of reference and not for comparison, if you've ever dug any or all of Wanda Jackson, Nanci Griffith or Lucinda Williams, Petite is your cup of tea----and we don't mean chamomile. San Diego's country rocking honky tonk queen serves up such a hot platter here you're already heard the whole thing before you know it's over. A killer breath of fresh air, this lady is da bomb throughout. With a command of all the Americana forms at her beck and call, this set makes the back porch the epicenter of the universe.

SEXTONES/Moonlight Vision: A bunch of cats out in the Nevada desert wondered what would happen if they cloned AWB with Stuff. Here's your answer. Blue eyed soul sharp enough to land them opening spots with brown eyed cats that know funk, this is some greasy, bad ass party music that is killer stuff. A lot of the 70s might have sucked but this bunch knows how to take the best and leave the rest. Sizzling stuff that'll get your blood flowing. Well done.

STEVE KOZAK BAND/It's Time: An award winning white boy with the blues from up north gives life a nice loping shuffle as he rounds the bend of doing this for 30 years. A fine example of musical hygge if it came from Denmark, this comfy set is a welcoming set that makes itself at home and settles in as the perfect guest. Fine stuff that hit's the target with ease.

DRUNK HISTORY season 4: A show like this can go on forever since it feels like something you could have done with your friends. Get a celebrity drunk and let him tell historical tales. Not filled with your usual celebs and hitting topics that somehow are kept contemporary, it's even more of a hoot if you get a little sloshed so you can feel like you're part of the fun in real time. The greatest solution to boring history lessons to come along yet, and hopefully, there will continue to be more on the way. Certifiably a laugh riot, once again.

Volume 40/Number 125
March 6, 2017
830 W. Route 22 #144
Lake Zurich, IL., 60047
CHRIS SPECTOR, Editor and Publisher
Copyright 2017 Midwest Record

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