BRYAN LEE/Sanctuary: This funky white boy with the blues already had a load of Nawlins and Chicago under his belt with an already impressive career when he was touched by the spirit in Norway which led to the genesis of this funky, blues gospel album. While just mentioning gospel can be off putting to a lot of listeners, there's something about the way this soul comes from the soul that you'd be a fool not to check it out because of preconceived notions about gospel. He certainly takes the secular to church and somehow the two entities find a middle ground in his soul without having to fight for it. Tasty and unexpected, this cat has a way of seeing things better than the sighted can. Hot stuff.
KYLE NASSER/Persistent Fancy: Abashedly egghead jazz, this sax man likes to explore from different directions going so far here as to draw inspiration from Shostakovich and Shakespeare. Angular and curiously laid back, this is the new chapter in literary jazz where impressionism is taken to new corners. A must if football on Sunday afternoon isn't your métier.
DEEP ENERGY ORCHESTRA/Playing With Fire: With cats from King Crimson and John McLaughlin on board, you can certainly detect their influences, but underneath it all, this feels like a lot of the prog rock on Charisma in the early 70s with added world beat underpinnings. Fearlessly creative while keeping things accessible, there's a tasty amalgam of left learning goodies lurking in these grooves sure to keep you guessing and interested throughout. A sure bet for any one looking for a wild ride.
(7d Media 1811)
JOVINO SANTOS NETO QUINTETO/Por Causa de Voce: What better way to celebrate Jobim's 100th birthday than to let some crack Brazilian cats takes Jobim's sambas, turn them on their heads and let the good times roll? Nothing here ever rolls off the rails, it just presents Jobim in a high octane form the master would surely approve of. With stellar guests on board that know the terrain, the audience will support my judgment that a good time is here to be had by all. Wonderful stuff that just goes above and beyond.
(Adventure Music 1117)
JOHNNY & JAALENE: In which we find Kid Ramos bringing his son into the family business along with his 16 year old playmate, both of whom are sounding wise beyond their years. Debuting with an album of classic rock/R&B covers, their youth brings a fresh innocence to these oldies while keeping things authentic. A highly fun set that grabs you in a sincere under the radar way, whether you're a kid or wish you were again, this'll bring you back to the roller rink no matter if it really existed or just existed in your mind. Well done.
(Rip Cat 1806)
DAVID CAFFEY JAZZ ORCHESTRRA/All in One: Acquitting himself once again as the leader of the band, Caffey's jazz orchestra plays without affect, clichés or false notes, just playing great music from writing to execution. Smart and stylish, these casts know how to swing with everyone bringing all their chops and leaving them on the tape. Modern, contemporary big band that owes nothing to no one and is loaded with charts that know how to chart their own course. Hot stuff.
JIM PORCELLA/Dream Dancing With You: Here's the kind of record you need when you want to feel like an instant grown up. Take a warm baritone, pair it with the phrasing of the classic black, male jazz vocalists, wrap it in the playing of a combo made up of first call/first take pros and give them all a set card that is loaded with can't miss chestnuts. Viola! A jazz vocal date that puts you right in the heart of when it all swung the joint all night long. First class stuff throughout.
BIRDSONGS AT MORNING/Signs and Wonders: One of those wonderful genre busting kind of sets that you just don't know what to do with. Feeling like prog rock for mainstream tastes, it's loaded with chops, theatricality, bombast and unexpected moves taking you to unexpected places. Paired with an audiophile version of the same program, this two disc set sort of has something for everybody. If you don't have a taste for accessible art rock, this might leave you cold but if you want something beyond the pale, this is a good place to stop and check things out. Big stuff for when you want to go big and not have it be noize.
(Blue Gentian 9)
JOHN FEDCHOCK/Reminiscence: Culled from the same live date that gave us his "Fluidity" record, this is one of the few times you get to hear the big band bone ace playing with a combo and really kicking it out. A live set all the way down it it's off the clock feel, this is jazz for jazzbos that just want to swing, groove and feel the full daddio experience. Fun stuff that'll make you wish you were there, this is the next best thing. Check it out.
CHRISTIAN McBRIDE'S NEW JAWN: He's talking Philly at cha, y'all. Deciding to keep it real because his new tangent is loaded with civil rights, angular jazz that defies easy listening and record company sensitivities, he's got the chops and foresight to keep it all from running off the rails no matter how close it seems to. Hard hitting stuff for when you need to fire up the blood a bit, this jawn will not make you yawn.
(Mack Avenue 1133)
ALEXANDER CLAFFY/Standards-What Are You Doing the Rest of Your Life: A rising bass ace that's already made a few bones draws heap big praise from Ron Carter and shows why he's earned it in the grooves. The tracks might be standards and his playing straight ahead but this is anything but a standard romp. Swinging and adding a nice dose of smarts to chestnuts, Claffy is on the money throughout and knows what he's doing and what he's about. Proving himself as a solid leader as well, this is a smoking date that plays well again and again. Hot stuff.
(SMK Jazz 2)
Number 41/Number 339
October 5, 2018
830 W. Route 22 #144
Lake Zurich, IL., 60047
CHRIS SPECTOR, Editor and Publisher
Copyright 2018 Midwest Record
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