TRIGGERS & SLIPS/The Stranger: A bit of a genre splicer of a band, they call themselves ‘rock n' roll with country soul' which is enough of a marketing cliché to scare new fans away, but in a Twitterized world, they wear it well. Not quite hard core enough to call themselves honky tonk, even if most nu listeners couldn't handle it, this is dandy organic country stuff that has the right lope and gait to make sure you know it's after hours somewhere in the world. Delightfully offbeat in a highly entertaining way. Country for people that don't think they like country, if this ain't a wonderful record for opposites to bond over, nothing is. Well done.
INDUBIOUS/Beleaf: It doesn't hurt to have genre specific tastes to get the most out of this record but if you appreciate west coast reggae, these two brothers born with cystic fibrosis who wouldn't take no for an answer will have you knowing in no time flat why they are cruising at top speed in the genre. With a unique vision and sound, this skanks along in fine fashion and really proves that the third time is the charm. Hot stuff.
16 BARS/soundtrack: I've known some pretty heavy cats that wanted to do documentaries about music in jail but this set originated by Arrested Development's Speech shows how they were all approaching it from the wrong direction, and probably in search of the wrong financing. The godfather of conscious rap keeps it real and spares no expense in getting the imprisoned to get their sound to the fullest. Anyone with a hidden PRT side they still harbor will recognize the sound of the spirit being uplifted by music no matter what. Perhaps we'll be hearing more from this mostly young collection of rappers that are seeing clearly.
BRIA SKONBERG/Nothing Never Happens: In which Skonberg uncovers a side to her musical arsenal that proves if you think you know her, you don't know her. Sisters have gone from doing for themselves to not taking anything they don't have to. Mixing pissed off vocals and lyrics with Miles calibre blowing, Skonberg's new flag is one that going to be saluted like never before. With a sound, fury and vibe that's firmly in the moment, this hard hitting date really delivers. Hot stuff, even at it's coolest moments.
PAUL WINTER CONSORT & FRIENDS/Everybody Under the Sun-Voices of the Solstice Vol. 1 the Singers: And for those of you that think you've heard it all, and for those of you that think Winter is a geezer setting off into the setting sun to enjoy his emeritus years sleeping late and crabbing about how the newspapers have all turned to crap---it's time for you to wake up and smell the coffee. Releasing just in time to celebrate his 40th annual winter concert with a round up of guests that'll blow your mind (as it does every year), the lad reaches into the far reaches of his closet to pull out great performances by guest singers (and their entourages when appropriate) to fill a double disc set that blow your mind just from the surface of riches it skims. Mixing folk, jazz, new age, gospel and world as offered by friends no longer with us, friends we've lost touch with and friends we never knew, the back stories to some of this material alone is worth the price of admission. As close as a record can be to being a piece of art you can hang on the wall and admire, even the snottiest of brats that just see Winter as an old hippie will have to stop and give pause and thanks for the energy and devotion it takes to present grandeur like this year in, year out. The most killer of killer stuff (and there are more collections waiting in the wings).
(Living Music 52)
JEROME JENNINGS/Solidarity: How things can change across the generational divide. On the drummers second album, a musical tribute to black women that's woke to say the least, I get a bit of this Ellington vibe to it----and Ellington did say you have to beat a woman like a drum to get either to do what you want them to. Other than that, this cat born in 1980 and originally inspired by Sheila E, knows his stuff as a player, writer, arranger and material picker. A solid mainstream jazz release, with or without the side order of politics that doesn't come from the church basement, jazzbos have the choice of enjoying this for the music or the message in the grooves. Solid throughout.
Volume 43/Number 363
October 29, 2019
830 W. Route 22 #144
Lake Zurich, IL., 60047
CHRIS SPECTOR, Editor and Publisher
Copyright 2019 Midwest Record
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