PETE McGUINNESS JAZZ ORCHESTRA/Along for the Ride: One of our fave treats is when chestnuts are roasted with seasonings more creative than salt. McGuinness doesn't need this third time to be the charm for him to stake his place as a modern master of swinging big band sounds. Mixing originals and chestnuts seamlessly into a fine mix, him and his gang get the blood flowing here like a mighty river. A tasty work out throughout, this is a dandy, can't miss date for any big band fan that wants it all. Well done.
GERRY GIBBS THRASHER PEOPLE/Our People: In which we find the multi tasking Gibbs bringing his talents to a different fore as he ventures jazz into art with a wild set that opens the ears to possibilities not often thought about. A cinematic in scope kind of release, he plays tributes, offers glimpses and takes you on a different kind of world tour in that this isn't world jazz but it takes jazz around the world. You don't have to be an art freek to get it as it isn't really art jazz either. Gleefully coloring outside the lines, this is what are you looking for when you are looking for something completely different done right. Hot stuff.
(Whaling City Sound 115)
ROCHER FONDA SORGEN/New Origin: You know that guy who looks at a paining he doesn't understand and says ‘ my seven year old could have done that'? He'd say the same thing listening to these three improv aces doing their thing here in fine form. Wily in it's deceptive simplicity, this is anything but pots and pans music, it's some dandy art a seven year could not make. Open eared gazebos have a real treat in store for them here. Well done.
(Not Two 985)
ALEXA TARANTINO/Winds of Change: Posi-Tone continues to claim it's position as the home for saxy ladies with this new release by a cat that certainly earned her spurs at Wynton Marsalis' side, as well as other luminaries along the way. Knowing her way around art as well as arranging, she can equally blow up a storm or a quiet storm. Putting music first and gender second, jazz once again leads the way in being the universal language. Smoking throughout.
MICHELE D'AMOUR & the Love Dealers/Heart of Memphis: Even though this is blues and not world beat, world beaters will get it when D'Amour says Memphis feels like home. More of a blues/Memphis soul stew than a straight up Stax etc feeling set, this white girl with the blues doesn't make any bones about taking blues where she needs to as it takes her where it will. Fun stuff for modern ears that don't really care about picking cotton on the delta and want to hear some choogling the way they think it should be. On the money throughout.
JON GINDICK/Love at the All Night Café: A blues harmonica ace who has spent his whole career making a living coloring outside the lines in various ways turns in one of those late career, understated gems. Keeping it simple as he shows off his love for everything from the blues harp masters to "Nighthawks at the Diner" and everything in between, this is such a well written, tasty release, you wont believe it. A stone cold winner throughout that will open your ears to many new possibilities--even as it keeps things old school.
MEGHAN HAYES/Seen Enough Leavers: Despite recording this after coming out of a 20 year marriage, she sounds like Joan Baez (if she didn't care about politics) if she was born in 1999 and grew up thinking of Nirvana as an oldies act. You have to play it several times to really believe this set is amazing and not that you just want to believe it's amazing. Opening the gates to a new wave of singer/songwriters that are going to need something on the ball to keep up with this, count this as a hard core winner throughout.
(Cranky Heartburn 53072)
PHRAIM/freim: A lot of my Euro pals tell me there's the right way and the Euro way. The neat thing about the Euro way is that you can't break the rules if you don't know them or can't follow them. Nina Reiter is so gleefully doing things the Euro way here it's almost like she's created her own rules. Gershwin and "Greensleeves" next to each other? And the flow works since this jazzbo aggregation knows what they are doing? Yep. And the rest of the set carries on with what should be loads of cognitive dissonance---but it doesn't. And the band cooks. Fun stuff from a gang that seems to understand that if you do what you love..... Well done.
Volume 43/Number 205
May 14, 2019
830 W. Route 22 #144
Lake Zurich, IL., 60047
CHRIS SPECTOR, Editor and Publisher
Copyright 2019 Midwest Record
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