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MURIEL ANDERSON/Eclipse: The guitar gal whose music has conquered space as it careened around the cosmos on space ships switches over to harp guitar for a lovely album of music inspired by the recent eclipse. When not doing her originals, she kicks clichés in the teeth and makes it all worth listening to even if the thought of some of the tracks make you groan. Continuing her innovative packagings, this cd is packed in a greeting card that let's you say what you have to. Another stellar collection in her galaxy of winners.

GLEB KOLYADIN: Anybody up for some old school prog piano/keyboard stuff? If you didn't know better, you might just think this was some Keith Emerson stuff from back in the day you missed. With an over riding classical/orchestral vibe running through it, you know what this is about and for those in the know, it certainly feels good. Check it out.

JAN JIRASEK/Czech & Moravian Christmas Carols: Taking Christmas music into really new directions, the label produces a new work by a contemporary cat working with a clear foreign sensibility. Putting a children's choir front and center, adding loads of whimsy running in and out and stocking the proceedings with a vibe that'll make you think this is some lost classic, it's never too late to push holiday music forward to the next level of the game. A totally charming set that really hits it out of the park, even if you don't know what they are singing about, they will get to you. Well done throughout and the birth of a new tradition.

DASHING-Sounds of the Season: A traditional Christmas record that leans to the left no matter how right down the middle it seems. With the Moravian Philharmonic Orchestra under pinning it all, you get lots of classic holidays moves and then some. Sounding very much like something that would have been from RCA's Living Stereo series, the recitation, singing and music all add up to a smoking, new holiday addition. Just the thing if you're dreaming of a white Christmas like they used to make, this is the tonic that cures all ills. Killer stuff.

TOMMY RYMAN/Having the Time of My Life: Perhaps it's one of those time and tide things but if some old school comic, say Stanley Myron Handleman, didn't predicate his schtick being so heavily based in nerditude, he could have been Ryman. Though Ryman looks and acts like a comic your mother could love, once he gets warmed up the bitch slaps come fast and furiously--but with sweetness. A funny situational cat, Ryman brings the laughs and then some.

GLENN WOOL/This Road Has Tolls: He looks like a slacker but he's a high octane cat that brings the heat, quite often from left field, and let's the fur fly from there. Always on the attack, he barely gives you time to think about what you just heard and the next thing you know, the next laugh is hitting you in the face. Hard charging but surprisingly not angry, Wool is on point throughout his riffs.

Volume 41/Number 119
February 27, 2017
830 W. Route 22 #144
Lake Zurich, IL., 60047
CHRIS SPECTOR, Editor and Publisher
Copyright 2018 Midwest Record

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