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KWAME BINEA SHAKEDOWN/Roots Rock n Universal Love: Everything about the look of this set should have you thinking it's a modern reggae record but it's actually brown eyed soul cruising through rock town. A hard rocking date with southern, soulful touches, this blends it's multi culti stripes smoothly into a modern sound that kids from all sides of the tracks can dance too and get a message from. A very all encompassing date, this sets a new standard for music that parties with a purpose. Check it out.

AERIAL SCHOOL/Love is Calling: Here's a hard rock duo playing like head bang never went away. Hormonal hard rock for restless teens that want to have festivals morph back in to arena shows where the walls rattle when the amp is turned up to 11. Proto anthemic stuff that not an anathema, if you were ever young, you'll know that the little girls understand--as do the little boys. Hard stuff for rough and ready times.

SHEA WELSH/Arrival: One of those cats that you've heard but never heard of whose played everything with everybody, Welsh and his adventurous guitar finally step out into their own spotlight after a great deal of wood shedding in LA clubs and studios. An ax wielder more in the tradition of John McLaughlin than Charlie Christian, the fingers are flying on this set of mostly originals that comes on so hard, fast and diverse even some mighty ax wielders out there could easily find themselves catching their breath as they try to keep up. A solid treat for the open eared ready to take it to the next level of the game.

DYLAN TAYLOR/One in Mind: So if you're a bass player of a certain age--hell, any age, you just don't turn down the opportunity to be in a trio with Larry Coryell and Mike Clark. A jazz trio working as a unit even if they aren't, even if they are pals, this is the stuff that keeps you out late at night at the club; the band is cooking and their left leaning edge is undeniable keeping you rapt and on the edge of your seat. Tasty stuff that won't happen again, this is as jazzbo as it gets and it's mighty fine.

ECHOLUST/Veldisa: Outsiders that understand you have to make something people want to spent their money on if you wan t to make music as a business, these dark wave shoe gazers keep it melodic rather than abrasive. A debut album from a group whose members have been around long enough to gather the smarts to do it right, this is the launch pad for a crew that's going to speak to the times and make it last. Check out this nu trip through the underground.

THE FURYS/Sound of: A legacy punk release that mixes old and new tracks, they might be 40 years on but there's no dust on them. Suburban moms that don't turn out for Rick Springfield at parking lot summer day music fests are sure to rock along to it once again.

MAX'S KANSAS CITY (1976 & Beyond)/various: The return of a classic (and then some). Back in the day, it was either Max's or CBGB if you were a malcontent fed up with dinosaur bands, parents, complacency and all that middle class stuff. Of course, without the seeds planted here, there never would have been punk, grunge, glam and all the rest of the stuff that went mainstream but was way out of the loop back then. Pairing up both the records that covered this scene along with stuff that was hiding in the can, this is a classic, probably penultimate, scenester release. Utterly crazy stuff that took it over the top, rock changed in the 70s but the spirit of rebellion that powered it all along was there underneath it all. A malcontent's textbook, it's only right that underground legend Jimi Lalumia, who is still standing, gets to lead you through this journey. Contemporary rock in a purely unvarnished state before co-option and corruption set in. A must hear, must have.

MIKE YOUNGER/Little Folks Like You and Me: The voice, the sound, the attitude---this sounds like some classic Dylan and the Band stuff. Already painting his masterpiece, this is the adult sound of the streets giving roots/Americana the sorely needed kick in the pants it regularly needs to keep from being formulaic and killing itself. If you're a listener that appreciates lyrics that say something, there's a lot here for you to like. Well done throughout.

CALABRIA FOTI/In the Still of the Night: Before you ask yourself if we really need another look back at Cole Porter, check out the names of the cats that showed up for this date and remember that Foti shared a Grammy nomination with Peter Griffin's alter ego. Now answer. This stellar jazz vocalist takes this to that spot somewhere between jazz and cabaret and parked a truck load of special sauce out back to apply liberally. We know the songs are unassailable, but her personalization of same really adds to it all. Jazz vocal fans, lift your voices and cheer---this is the real deal.

TONY NATALE/Camden Promise: A drummer from Jersey that proved his mettle a long time ago is playing it for himself and invites you to follow if you feel like minded. Making music to inspire without going all hippie on you, there's a nu message for a nu day lurking in here that feels like the product of a lot of self discovery. He might just be here to keep you from touching the stove to see if it's really hot when someone tells you it is. He might look like someone that came to Woodstock and never left but his tunes take you some place else instead. Check it out.

Volume 40/Number 199
May 19, 2017
830 W. Route 22 #144
Lake Zurich, IL., 60047
CHRIS SPECTOR, Editor and Publisher
Copyright 2017 Midwest Record

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