CHRISTY DORAN'S SOUND FOUNTAIN/For the Kick of It: The protean bandleader that believes a moving target is harder to hit shows up with yet another aggregation where the only thing in common to all of them is his guitar leadership. Sounding kind of how you would imagine white people making civil rights jazz would sound, this angular and muscular set is highly progressive and left leaning in most unexpected way and times. Not at all for moldy figs, this stuff practically starts where Zappa left off.
(Between the Lines 71247)
VEIN/Symphonic Bop: The smoking piano trio that pulls no punches when it comes to venturing where others fear to tread takes up with a symphonic big band that sounds like a throw back to when Living Stereo was a new thing and engineers and producers were looking to fill nascent suburban rec rooms with as bold a sound as possible. Easily a room filling affair, you can hear echoes of when pushing the boundaries was the norm as highly involved instrumental music was in deeper than just the margins. With a vibe that goes from Previn to Bernstein to John Williams, this is a real cooker that does it all.
(Double Moon 71355)
FLYING CAKES/19 Ways t Rain: A quartet that found it's inspiration in graffiti in India has the power and vision of youth as it's driving wheel driving this angular and creative sound to fine heights. Adventurous listeners that think they've heard it all will have a garden of delights here to sift through. Young cats with old souls, this set lights some solid fires.
(Double Moon 71357/Jazz Thing Next Generation V. 77)
CONSIDER THE SOURCE/You Are Literally a Metaphor: Are they a jam band? Are they prog rockers? Are they really the Sci-Fi Middle Eastern fusioneers they describe themselves as? Or all three? Sounding like something familiar from another galaxy, they aren't quite doing subterranean nightmare music as there's a strong urban underground vibe running through it, this is simply solid left leaning rock for tastes that like it all mixed together at once.
STEVE HAINES and the Third Floor Orchestra: Haines soaks himself in works from his native Canada making the kind of set that would have been a solid Loreena McKennitt effort even as he doesn't acknowledge her anywhere---even with Becca
Stevens pulling off her best McKennitt. Sprightlier than the path McKennitt has been taking as she edges toward retirement, this is a stone cold must for anyone who misses a new take on the bonny swans but doesn't need to be bummed out by a dark night of the soul.
(Justin Time 8616)
SOUL MESSAGE BAND/Soulful Days: An organ combo full of Chicago jazz vets show that white boys can be loaded with soul too---even if they are best known as jazzbos. With greasy B3 and soulful sax, these guys could be mistaken for Stax cats if Chicago soul didn't have it's own distinctive edge. Fun cats having a fun time, this is the go to party platter when you want to slow it down a bit but not put it to sleep. Smoking.
KARIN PLATO/This Could be the One: One of Canada's best known jazz vocalists, she was a singer for a while before turning into a swinger 20 odd years ago. Sounding like she was inspired to jazz by Tom Waits' early beatnik phase, this is a smoking date that is tailor made for grown ups that don't have to worry about getting home to get the baby sitter home. Smoky the way it used to be, inspiration from all the classic thrushes is in evidence and she does a great job of making it all her own handily making this set the one. Hot stuff.
BIG DADDY WILSON/Deep in My Soul: A down home cat that eventually found his voice while in the army in Germany comes home to down home where he hooked up with Jim Gaines and Muscle Shoals to deliver a bona fide down home date that sounds like it was cut on the ride from Memphis to Muscle Shoals. A real soul man with real soul, how come nobody sent his demos to Malaco a long time ago? This set makes it all down home no matter where you are listening. Hot stuff.
TOM CULVER/Duke's Place: This would have been such a fine addition to the hoopla surrounding the Ellington centennial a few decades back, but the stars have to align in just the right place at just the right time to create such a fine set like this. With producer Mark Winkler's ear finely tuned to the proceedings and the crew of first call jazzbos all tuned up, all Culver had to do was step up to the mic and make it sound easier than it really must have been. With all the right moves in all the right places, you can't call yourself a jazzbo if you don't roll up your sleeves and get way deep into this. Top shelf throughout.
(Café Pacific 16060)
NATALIE CRESSMAN & IAN FAQUINI/Setting Rays of Summer: Did you see this one coming? Trombone ace Cressman does an intimate duo recording and sings samba? It works! Intimate in the best samba tradition, it might be a tad more international than that, but the apple didn't fall far from the tree. And here we thought Verve and Fantasy were making all those intimate albums because they were cheap. The vibe these two create just can't be beat.
Volume 43/Number 153
March 23, 2019
830 W. Route 22 #144
Lake Zurich, IL., 60047
CHRIS SPECTOR, Editor and Publisher
Copyright 2019 Midwest Record
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