DOUG MACDONALD/Califournia Quartet: Playing like a bunch of modern daddios, they don't give things a pomo edge, they just take classic daddio jazz and bring it forward for younger ears to appreciate. A nicely bumping, buoyant set, it's not ear candy but it isn't a chore to hear either. In the pocket throughout, this is just what the jazzbo doctor ordered as a prescription for guitar led quartet good times.
DAVE WILSON QUARTET/One Night at Chris': A protean sax man that can lead his crew through anything, he smokes on originals and covers that you wouldn't think fit the format---but they do. Lively and crackling, they are turned on by the live Philly audience and make sure they heat up the night properly. Tasty stuff that makes you wish you were there.
TRUEHEARTS/Songs for Spike: Americana that blows open the ears and doors so firmly you really won't know what to do with it. Transplanted to Nashville from DC, there's a boat load of singer/songwriter and folkie moves at it's core---but then they add the special sauce full of mash ups from all around the horn. Soulful white people that have been honing their chops for quite a while under various names, they really pull it together here making a set that makes you sit up and take notice. Well done.
CHARLIE ROTH/I'm the Smile: The well traveled Minnesota folkie beat it down to Austin to round up a bunch of the equally mature musicians to craft up a lived in set that sounds like it knows of whence it speaks. With darkness running through it that almost seems to contradict the title, fans of meaty songwriting have a blue plate special to checkout here.
BIGLEMOI/Permanent Vacation: The crew is collected from all over the world and they seem to being their influences with them. Basically a collection of moody songs for young people, even when it's at it's most shimmery, latch key kids that want to pogo while they rock out have got major ear candy here.
RICH PEARE/Classic Jazz Guitar: A jazzbo that started off as a classical guitarist comes full circle in that he makes this beautifully unadorned record heavy on jazz with a classical, recital feel. A real treat of that hard core acoustic guitar fans that really want to get down with the recording and hear the fingering with no frippery, this set shows how you can set things on fire without resorting to pyrotechnics. Well done.
JAELEM BHATE/On the Edge: Sometimes you just have to acknowledge that the Stan Kenton influence runs so hard and so deep that you can't escape it. This rising composer/bandleader captures a lot of the vibe of when the Kenton crew was cooking at the flashpoint of highly creative and highly accessible. A tasty listening date that runs the engine on high throughout, this is finely dine stuff right in the pocket, right in the tradition and right in the middle of everything good. Stellar stuff from a rising star.
TOM EULER/Blues Got My Back: One thing for sure about this guitar slinging white boy with the blues from Virginia---he's going to be changing the nature of local beach party music. A young comer that seems to come by all these blues chops organically, the established blues labels must have been asleep or offering lousy deals to let this cat get away. Solid throughout.
RYNDAK-LOCKWOOD/Gratitude: A piano/sax led date that shines a light on Chicago, this is some right on fusion with a soupcon of Chicago funk in the mix. Long time jazzbos that know how to put all the right moves in all the right places, this set is a must for anyone that wants to start the weekend early, like Wednesday, since the warm weather in Chicago can be overwhelming but fleeting. Real pros taking a real turn.
(Pacific Coast Jazz 723000)
JUDY WEXLER/Crowded Heart: Attempting a more modern song list than on previous releases, this top shelf jazz vocalist gives a bunch of writers the attention they probably wouldn't otherwise get, served up so well. With a first call crew in line behind her, this is another valentine for jazz vocal fans---even if they have to be dragged into the present kicking and screaming. Tasty stuff throughout.
(Jewel City Jazz 1213)
Volume 43/Number 214
May 23, 2019
830 W. Route 22 #144
Lake Zurich, IL., 60047
CHRIS SPECTOR, Editor and Publisher
Copyright 2019 Midwest Record
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