DENNY ZEITLIN with George Marsh and Mel Graves/Name of This Terrain: So what happens when you have so much forward thinking creativity that you can't contain it all? In the midst of the hippie years, when outré was the flavor du jour, Zeitlin and Co. found that place where Zappa meets Bernstein and go off exploring some electro acoustic fusion funk new age. And none of it feels like it's done kitchen sink style. Well of course the labels wouldn't write a check for this bunch to finish the date. Hell, even Zappa was trying to fit the format. Real artists move on and these 1969 sessions were left to history with most copies of it's limited run being destroyed. Well, it only took 50 years for this forward thinking stuff to find it's audience and here it is. Dr. Z. has gone pretty far out there when he feels like it but this goes beyond the reaches of the seventh galaxy where Hendrix and Miles are waging their final war over Betty Davis. Who knew what was lurking beneath the surface all this time? Utterly wild stuff that could have changed the face of FM radio and beyond.
(Now Again 5227)
EATER/Ant: Is punk really kind of timeless like jazz and jam? Here we have the 1977 debut by England's answer (?) to the Ramones that owed a debt to the Bowie/Reed axis as they were just kids and finding their way. It might have been your grand paw's sound of the suburbs but it can certainly be a bonding moment for grand dad and lad. Still high octane and still a real ramrod, these complete recordings fill in some blanks for the blank generation.
JAKE LECKIE/The Guide: In which we find Leckie foregoing his Latin music love for a folk/jazz free sound that gives you a vibe of what would have taken place if Lou Reed envisioned "Berlin" as a jazz album. An intimate album that lopes along nicely, this is appropriate mood music for when the mood really needs to be turned down a touch or two.
JOSU DE SOLALUN/Haydn Piano Sonatas: This is a funny thing to say but this master piano man finds the Mozart in Haydn giving his works a light touch and a playful feeling found in Mozart's works that have been nationalized by kids. A generously packed double disc of wonderful playing in which this cat carries the date himself and needs no help to flesh out the sound, he's got your ears in good hands throughout. A great listen.
DAVID ANTICH/Handel Complete Recorder Sonatas: For all of you who have been led to think of recorder as a thing for kids, this windy cat leads an ensemble through some Handel works in a most adult fashion. A high minded recital kind of set, if this set doesn't say Sunday afternoon wine and cheese to you, probably nothing will. A solid program throughout.
STRONGMAN BLUES REMEDY/Vol. 1: Billing themselves as a collective instead of a band (which means they can swap out personnel as they go along?), Steve Strongman is a trusted brand in white, Canadian blues rock and he doesn't disappoint here as he tries on some new skin with a stellar collective of frozen north pals. Simply four on the floor party music, it's skillful and professional without being weak in the process. Solid stuff that gets the juices flowing, it sounds like Strongman can't miss yet again.
(Stony Plain 1462)
DESDEMONIA/Tus: Certainly cutting edge stuff for contemporary classical fans that find solace in music that other people would find clears the room. Tackling world premiere recordings by acclaimed bleeding edge Irish composer Finola Merivale, it takes real chops, energy and dedication to push this rock up the hill but they make the cacophony all come together in the end. Not for the faint of heart.
(New World 327)
STEVEN SCHICK/Weather Systems--A Hard Rain: One of the leading lights in commissioning modern percussion works, Schick is an artist through and through and can find space to put John Cage with others you wouldn't think of in the same breath---all in the cause of percussion. No drummer come lately, he's a cat that knows his way around art. And this double disc set is just the start of a series he's heralding under the umbrella of weather records.
JOHN-HENRY CRAWFORD/Corazon: Some players are just to the manner born. This young cellist's love for all things Latin didn't come along until late for him but taking to it like a fish to water, he came out of the box strong and has only gotten stronger in just a few short years. Not taking a moldy fig or a cutting edge approach, he uses class and style to show his love for Latin sounds from all times and places making it all his own. A worthy award winner that's been racking them up, all it takes is some occasional piano background for him to give you everything you need. Delightful all the way around.
(Orchid Classics 100198)
June 4, 2022
830 W. Route 22 #144
Lake Zurich, IL. 60047
CHRIS SPECTOR, Editor and Publisher
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