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EARL MacDONALD/Open Borders: Funky, big band sounding soul jazz that has music so bright it comes in colors. A wild set that doesn't believe in boundaries even if it does believe in structure, this set gives you a feeling of what Stan Kenton would be doing if he was still doing it his way today, with the help of Holman and those cats, of course. Tasty stuff for the real jazzbo, this is inspired playing that really delivers the goods well. Hot stuff throughout.

KAYO/Manhattan Sunset: The piano lady kicks it out on a set of mostly originals that she glides through with ease and style turning in kind of a pastiche mash up of the history of contemporary jazz as presented through her ears. Almost guided by the spirit of "Take the A Train", this Tokyo/Big Apple express choogles along like the jazz version of the soul train, making all the stops along the way. Tasty stuff that opens the ears nicely.

BOBBY KYLE/It's My Life: Of course it's his life, he's a lifer. A white boy with the blues for many decades, having rubbed shoulders with blues legends white and black, Kyle brings his classic chops into modern times diminishing the line between blues and rock to let the primal instincts of both hit the heights. Tasty stuff skewed toward adult tastes, he's here to help you remember what it is to rock it out. Well done.

ERIN HARPE and the Delta Swingers/Big Road: This is some big ups since we love ourselves some Rory Block but Harpe is the nu Block for the nu ears of the nu generation. In love with a slew of the greats that fueled Block's oeuvre, Harpe is a guitar slinger for modern times. This hard charging white gal with the blues raises the roof with every note. Easily Bonnie Raitt on modern performance enhancing drugs, Harpe is blues mama for our times. Killer stuff throughout.

BLACK STONE CHERRY/Black to Blues: This isn't just a bunch of white boys with the blues, this is white boys with a sense of blues history as the newest tune here was written by Don Nix back when the earth was cooling. Rocking bad boys inspired as much by the English appropriation as by the real thing, culture mash up continue to collide in fist pumping fashion. Hot & Heavy.

SERGEJ AVANESOV/Secret Language: From Russia he came with a love and knowledge of jazz and classics, having fondness for both. A sax man with smarts galore, he blows hard here without blowing his brains out in a fine program of lightly left leaning blowing that is much more than a tempest in a teapot. Solid stuff from a young lion that roars with ease.

SUPER SONIC BLUES MACHINE/Californisoul: The young ‘un would call everyone on boar d here a dinosaur even though they play the tracks these cats made immortal as if they were there the firs time around. These geezers aren't gathering around the fire to patch together a victory lap, they're kicking out like rockers half their ages. Not resting solely on well earned chops, these cats are out for a good time. Driven by protean drummer Kenny Aaronoff, this is classic rock for modern times---served up just right. A wonderful rocking tour de force for kids of all ages.

JERRY BERGONZI/Dog Star: The sax man with his ear on the future and the history of saxy jazz at his fingertips proves once again that Woody Allen wasn't 100% right about those who can't do--teach. With a fine resume as an instructor, Bergonzi knows how to follow his own good advise and turn in another first rate listening date that has the good stuff your ears need. With tasty playing from all on board to round things out, this is a date that knows how to deliver the goods in fine style. Hot stuff that prefers it nice and rough.

DANNY GRISSETT/Remembrance: The in demand side man that leads on his own like a pro brings his piano chops front and center in this hard charging, swinging set that mixes the old and new into a sweet, seamless whole that jazzbos who double as finger popping daddios will love, even when it gets meditative. Solid work throughout, this is the man with the plan who don't deliver spam. Hot stuff any modern jazzbo will love.

CASEY HENSLEY/Live: We were just thinking about Candye Kane the other day and along comes Laura Chavez with a new big, bad white girl with the blues that knows how to belt. How zesty is this 25 year old belter? She could cover Koko Taylor's signature "Wang Dang Doodle" and no one would dare to compare. This record encapsulates the places your parents didn't want you to hang out at. Bad ass, late night stuff from all on board, this band could have opened for Muddy at the Aristocrat. Yeah! The bar has been raised.

Volume 40/Number 357
October 24, 2017
830 W. Route 22 #144
Lake Zurich, IL., 60047
CHRIS SPECTOR, Editor and Publisher
Copyright 2017 Midwest Record

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