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KEVIN KASTNING/30/36: Out of 36 albums, this is only Kastning's 5th solo album. Do you think he cared what kid of marks he got in grade school for works and plays well with others? Whether alone or in groupings, he never fails to create mystic worlds that ride the lines between new age, prog, contemporary classical and what ever passing fancies might ride by. An intricate and ear opening work of great invention, this string wizard shows more imagination that a fleet of Disney artists. Killer stuff for the intense guitar fan that really wants to be taken away to far off places.
(Greydisc 3546)

JOHN MINNOCK/Right Around the Corner: Cabaret takes a nu turn as it's normal jazzy setting is pushed forward to a cabaret on Mars. Ear opening listening that gives chestnuts a new kind of roasting, moldy figs need not apply.

LAURA DICKINSON 17/Auld Lang Syne: Is pomo without irony retro? If so, this traditional but swinging big band holiday set that took Dickinson a while to pull together, gives first call jazzbos a chance to heat things up nicely for you for the holidays. Retro or not, there's a reason why the basics are the foundation and this gives gasser a great foundation. What better way to swing a holiday than with this? She's currently in your head from the new "Ralph" movie so you might as well bring her home as well.
(Music & Mirror)

RANDY CASEY/I Got Lucky: An Americana white boy with a mélange of blues emanating from his guitar is a rocker to the core with panoramic eyes and ears. Not a kitchen sink record, there is something here for everyone--especially those on the prowl for something new and different from a cat that's been flying high under the radar for too long. Savvy stuff that knows the ropes and how to swing on them properly.

INTERNATIONAL CONTEMPORARY ENSEMBLE/Aequa: This crew takes on their second take on the works of Anne Thorvaldsdottir in a set that's a stone cold natch for high tone types that linger at Sunday afternoon library recitals. High brow music for contemporary deep thinkers, this set traverses the depths of where music becomes sound and has to be peered at through nu lenses. An egghead supreme deluxe. If that's not enough, it comes as a two disc set with the second disc a super audio recording of the performance.
(Sono Luminus 92227)

MARK & RAIANNE/Live in Manitoba: Got a bad attitude about house concerts, folkies and all that organic stuff? Get a load of this folkie duo as they collect a bunch of performances from house concerts across Canada that shows them displaying all the charm and chops that were never displayed in "Mighty Wind". An utterly charming duo that displays everything you want to experience in an intimate setting, everything here works and it works wonderfully well. Hot stuff.
(Nobody's Favorite)

ALTERED LABYRINTH/The Defilers: Post punk indie pop that doesn't stint on the noize, this is for the cutting edge tastes that propelled cult acts to higher heights. The next sound of the suburbs?
(Cream Cloud)

BOBBY BLACKHAT/Put on Your Red Shoes: Both AARP and white boys with the blues take note. Here's a Virginia cat that had a day job for 27 years as a Coast Guard commander--and now he's showing you how to really enjoy retirement. With all the major blues styles tucked well under his belt, he serves them up from the heart and authentically making the northern migration sound totally contemporary. Kids, dis is da blooze--and not the kind that makes you roll your eyes and look at your watch. Killer stuff from the best the region has to offer.

DOUG FERONY/Sings Italian Favorites: Sorry you missed you chance to book Jimmy Roselli at your wedding? Take heart. Ferony, who appeared in "Goodfellas" is as close to the original real deals as you are going to find. Re-roasting the chestnuts here, he applies the special sauce without any manqueing around. His own swinging man all the way, he proves you can still do "Volare" and "Al De La" without making them sound like gift shop records. Working well because it's not meant to be a tribute record, this is a stone cold gasser all the way. Hot stuff from a super cool cat.

BRIAN LARNEY/White: A hard charging roots rocker that wears several musical hats simultaneously blasts out of the speakers here with a smoking country rocker/solo date that is right in the pocket for giving the genre a well needed kick in the pants to bring new ears into the tent. Having really sharpened his writing to the point of you not being able to hear the writing at work, this cat has too much on the ball to be a well kept secret for long. Well done throughout.

Volume 42/Number 30
November 30, 2018
830 W. Route 22 #144
Lake Zurich, IL., 60047
CHRIS SPECTOR, Editor and Publisher
Copyright 2018 Midwest Record

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