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HAMILTON LOOMIS/Live I n England: An actual sidekick of late period Bo Diddley and a sidekick of all the killer Texas blues shredders, this cat might be most famous for his Ford commercial talking out how he drives the shit out of the bitch, but in some circles, heís even more famous for the way he genre splices rock and more into real blues and serves it up hot for contemporary ears. One of the cats that is doing more than just talking about bringing the blues into the future, here we find him tearing it up in England, bringing his heavy shreddy to the ears that know how to appreciate our own stuff better than we do before repackaging it and selling it back to us. A first class road warrior, he once again makes a package you can be proud to bring home and display for curious ears far and wide.

TOM GULLION/Carswell: A little tired of the Chicago hustle, Gullion moved to rural Wisconsin and found the inspiration to make his most dynamic set yet. Reaching down and finding real jazz stuff in his guts, he pulled them out and put them to tape with some pals old and new. With plenty of time to use his sax to keep warm when the winds blow in from the west, Gullion makes a sax classic that finds him blowing like the standard bearers but putting his own moves into the mix. A solid, muscular work from another hot player thatís simply bubbling under and getting hotter all the time.

LISA B/Poetry of Groove: Three years ago, B established herself as our fave Catwoman since Julie Newmar and now we find her moving back to her writer/writer self and bringing her poetry slam side to the fore. Much more Jill Scott than Rod McKuen, B continues to ride the progressive tip with a creative abandon that make it seem easy to break convention and get away with it. As sexy as you can sound without being a pre-disco 70s soul/funk/rock (all three at once) diva, this is a set you canít put your finger on but certainly shouldnít ignore. Clearly left leaning but not just for the sake of it.

TONY MARCUS/Vanishing Point: If you have a taste for the offbeat but donít read album notes too closely, Marcus has been on your radar for a while without you even realizing it. Whether straight off beat, like playing with Frank Wakefield, or offbeat offbeat like playing with R. Crumb, you have to have something on the ball to play hokum without it coming off hokey. This is a cat that could easily have made a good buck as a shredder but heís chosen to take his ax to the farther reaches where the rewards might be more psychic than monetary but that make for some glowing memories. Paying more attention to his own career in recent times, Marcus hasnít lost his taste for playing the offbeat straight and this set takes you on a guided tour of the outer reaches from hokum to old time sounding jazz to a little bit of Django to a lot of smart lyrics. A great package for those that have long given up on the mainstream but want something that will give them a lot more than a passing smirk. Well worth checking out.

ASYLUM STREET SPANKERS/Godís Favorite Band: Dear, Lord, the band that no one knows what to do with but enjoy is back. And back they are with the first agnostic gospel album. Praise be. The cowpunk show band that doesnít like to cover the same ground twice and seems to have a limitless power of invention brings saint and sinner together on a single disc with a fire and fury that could only be inspired by Jerry Lee Lewis with the IRS on his tail. Taking it over the top yet again, the most consistent band of the last 15 years will make you fan if you arenít already by the time youíve almost played this once. Hot stuff by the reigning kings and queen of the underground.

TERMINATOR SALVATION: Yeah, we know, Christian Bale has a long way to go to replace Ahnolt at his most iconic (yeah, we know different roles as well), but McG and his special fx team give it the old college try. Rather than try to save the human race, maybe they should have thought about saving the franchise. The original comic came out because Hemdale was so broke they let the rights go cheaper than they should have. Now, this is the pic that brought down a fledgling studio. Be careful how you mess with the end of the world. We give them credit for keeping the line extension as vital as James Bond rather than cheapening it like ďSpeciesĒ. The Bluray copy is where itís at if you arenít a cheapskate. It has the directors cut which has even more of what you came for, lots of eye popping sound and visuals and a digital copy. Geeks, hereís your golden opportunity not to take any crap from anyone this Christmas. If this shows you how to save mankind, all you have to do is work backwards and it will show you how to destroy mankind. (Insert wicked laugh here). A well made crŤme puff for those who have the sweet tooth for it.

Volume 33/Number 20
November 20, 2009
830 W. Route 22 #144
Lake Zurich, IL., 60047
CHRIS SPECTOR, Editor and Publisher
©2009 Midwest Record

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