ORGANISSIMO/Alive & Kickin': This funky organ trio gleefully acknowledges a debt to Jimmy Smith, but they don't put themselves in their own back seat over it. Snaky soul funk like you haven‘t heard in years since the golden age of the groove record, this trio fills all the white spaces that need to be filled in and create all the sound you need to know the party has gotten started. Certainly a groover's paradise for anyone that has ever let the funk in their bloodstream and needs a new hit to get a new high. Hot stuff.
WAYNE BRASEL QUARTET/If You Would Dance: You gotta respect a guitarist that paid the bills by backing up Donna Summer and Debby Boone but has a friendship with Peter Erskine that goes back to teen age years with Stan Kenton. A very Wes influenced guitar date, this is Brasel's own voice all the way through and it's a clear voice that knows what it wants to say. A great laid back date that isn't easy, smooth or lite, this subtle set is right on the money through out. Solid stuff deserving of your attention.
JOHN FEDCHOCK NY SEXTET/Live at the Red Sea Jazz Festival: Maybe our ears are crying out for classic feeling dates or maybe it's atavistic senses coming back to the fore, but classic feeling dates like this area tonic. The Grammy winning bone man leads his crew through a date that kicks it into high gear as soon as the disc starts spinning. There's not a whole lot to analyze here, it's simply a date full of great jazz that any mainstream jazzbo will not be able to find fault with no matter how hard to tries to be the moldiest of figs. Simply an uplifting date that's a gas to play. Well done.
MINDI ABAIR/In Hi Fi Stereo: Boy, give a girl a radio show that let's her reach more people in a day than a year on the road would and she gets a real sense of what people want. After giving herself a taste of "In Crowd", Motown, Stax, Nawlins show bands, King Curtis and a bunch of sax/jazz classics, she comes up with her own classic. I gotta tell you, we're waiting for the YouTube of the pillow fight between her and label mate Candy Dulfer as Abair moves in on Dulfer's funky territory and even doffs the cap to James Brown, an indirect cop of Dulfer's romps with Maceo. Guess what? The listener wins! Fun funk that sizzles with jazz soul undertones and good vibes throughout. This is an overdue breakout set for Abair. Hot stuff that's right in the pocket.
FAREWELL DRIFTERS/Yellow Tag Mondays: Do you miss Nickel Creek? Are you too young to appreciate where Mike Marshall is coming from? Totally miss the boat on Mandomania? Pull up a chair, tip it back on two legs and enjoy a warm afternoon with this bunch in the background. Not exactly country, bluegrass or folk, they are the new wave and this is one cool wave to ride. They've got pop sensibilities and country flavored licks. They meld it together just right, hitting the high spots the CSN/Grateful Dead splinter groups were going for when record budgets were a lot higher and the distractions flowed easier. A great contemporary roots set that roots fans will love.
DAVE GLASSER/Evolution: Well traveled, well educated alto sax man comes in riding the progressive tip showing his influences from Monk to his ax. The rest of the crew is on board and this shows a different side than we were treated to on Glasser's Arbor's sides. With loads of originality and creativity, this is a driving date that knows when to charge and when to pull back delivering a tasty mix of textures and styles that all go down quite nicely. A today's version of the way it used to be in fine style.
BRANDON WRIGHT/Boiling Point: There appears to be a wealth of sax riches going on out there as this New York young lion is roaring his way through the ranks and is on a tear to the top. A tasty set of mostly originals, it's big apple jazz all the way, with a muscular, sharp edged tone and playing flashing bright throughout. Certainly loaded with it's own Coltrane moments, it's original and hard hitting as well as swinging. Check it out.
KARUNESH/Path of Compassion: A career retrospective of new age from Hawaii with two new tracks for this collection. Tastefully programmed for use in healing arts or just pure listening as a world beat inspired set, this is a well conceived outing that nicely touches the heart and opens the ears. What's even better, this isn't just girl friend music.
Volume 33/Number 157
April 7, 2010
830 W. Route 22 #144
Lake Zurich, IL., 60047
CHRIS SPECTOR, Editor and Publisher
Copyright 2010 Midwest Record
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