AARON SKILES/Wreckage from the Fire: A band breaks up, the driving force realizes he has a lot of stuff that wouldn't have fit into the band and he hits it out to where some other high flyers are hanging out. Sometimes change is good. Almost like Lynyrd Skynyrd without the tragedy, here comes some hard hitting, guitar driven rock right up your left of center alley. Good time stuff for those who can still rock the night away.
(Dr. Sam G.)
CARLA ULBRICH/Twang: Christine Lavin rightfully gives Ulbrich high marks. While she might have rolled from down South to Jersey, this apple didn't fall far from the (Lavin) tree. Like Lavin, this palette clearer can make you smile and cry but always provides a bumper against having to deal with the real world for a few minutes. Way more eclectic than an ep should have room for, there's a lot going on here and it's all good. She'd been around long enough that you should finally know about her if you don't already.
(Romantic Devil 21)
LIA HIDE/Missing Fourth Guest: In which we widen the scope of our lens to go all the way to Greece to find our new dark wave art chick. As moody as the genre demands, this sounds like something that would go really well with mushrooms. Welcome to then nu world of someone to share your darkness with.
SPIN CYCLE/III: Wild sax man Tom Christensen rounds up the fellow jazzbos for a new romp through the high octane but accessible side of free jazz. A real old school gasser where everyone gets to show off their first call chops, this is a solid set of bad boys having the kind of romp where the boundaries aren't in effect. A sizzler throughout.
THE WILDROOTS SESSIONS/V. 2: As good as the first set of this back porch music was, this second set is even better. Maybe for the third volume, they'll invite the Crowmatix to drop by and create a modern version of "Will the Circle be Unbroken" for the original's 51st anni. A utterly smoking roots kaleidoscope of all the kinds of roots music you could want by all the various roots players you could name, this set simply burns the back porch down. The only people having more fun listening to this are the cats laying it down so righteously. Killer stuff.
MOSTLY OTHER PEOPLE DO THE KILLING/Disasters V. 1: Down to a piano trio again, Moppa Elliot still commands these hell raisers, the deck loaded here with killer players of note, to take you on a tour of Pennsylvania towns that had notable tragedies. Making improv cocktail music for a hip lounge on Mars, these madmen won't get through to your pop unless he was a junkie back in the day. Perhaps a parade of one of the greatest mash ups since Zappa was in his prime, it just doesn't get any wilder without making you violent than this.
(Hot Cup 201)
SATOKO FUJII & JOE FONDA/Thread of Light: This piano/bass improv duo is still pretty out there but this set kind of gives you the feeling you got when Carla Bley first decided to start coming in from the rain. At it's mellowest, it sounds like an avant Sunday recital. At the other end, it sounds like Fujii doing her thing. There's something for everyone here!
JUST A SEASON/Leave to Come Home: A certain segment of country rock fans will love this album and not know why. Well, suppose Gram Parsons cleaned up because he shot through his trust fund and was recording indie or DIY because current execs had no idea who he was. This is right where his cosmic American music would be. Maybe Keef would through him a short rope for old times sake and be hiding in the mix. That's my story and I'm sticking to it. Quality cosmic American music lives on righteously!
KATE SOPER/Understanding of All Things: Hold it right there--you aren't an art chick when you're up for a Pulitzer. The forward thinking Soper is making recitals for the meta world well in advance of it's arrival. Her electro acoustic stuff is out there but it is grounded. True open minded stuff for the open eared.
(New Focus 322)
PATHOS TRIO/When Dark Sounds Collide-New Music for Percussion and Piano: The subtitle really tells you everything you need to know about the music of this forward thinking trio's debut set. It kind of starts you off where "Tubular Bells" left you and goes from there. Progressive without being pots and pans music, this crew is swinging for the fences but not swinging wildly. Experimental leaning ears will find it well worth taking a look see here.
February 23, 2022
830 W. Route 22 #144
Lake Zurich, IL. 60047
CHRIS SPECTOR, Editor and Publisher
Copyright 2022 Midwest Record
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