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ROGER CAIRNS/The Dream of Olwen: You really have to have uptown tastes to get the most out of this cabaret vocal date that finds the vet vocalist working without a net, just a piano behind him. Caressing ballads that are audience faves and personal faves, Cairns cats himself here as the classic saloon singer that knows just what you are feeling when the late set gets into gear and it's the middle of the week. A well done set that's not for everybody but hit's the target for those "One More for the Road" moments.

ANNIE KOZUCH/Here With You: A solid singer with clean, clear back up--something so easy to take for granted. A well traveled singer that has a load of highlights on her resume, Kozuch keeps it low key on her debut but don't you underestimate the fire burning throughout. Easy, after hours jazz with a raft of familiar faves that she does proper justice to, this is the comfy kind of record you want to be able to reach for when the noise of the day has finally worn you down. A tasty winner throughout.

THE GLENIOUS INNER PLANET: Jazz bass player Glen Ackerman sounds like the kind of kid that was always too creative for his own good. Now as an adult that tickles the ears of loads of his contemporaries as they come through his Houston stomping grounds, he takes his Zappaized visions of what jazz is and isn't and comes in with the kind of set jazz malcontents will love. Genre splicing with abandon but using musical care and instincts, Ackerman is riding the tip of 21st Century fusion with a heady mix that blows the ears open. Moldy figs need not apply but college kids and civil rights jazz fans can start forming the line to the left.

FOURPLAY/Let's Touch the Sky: This was always Bob James band so you'd have to be a real chops freak to notice that Larry Carlton was replaced by Chuck Loeb as the train keeps a rolling. After 20 years, they still set the standard for contemporary, smooth jazz that's always a joy to have around. Snappier than the usual bizjazz, Fourplay doesn't tease. They bring it like the pros they are but keep the blood flowing through the tracks. Well done by pros you can trust.

THE COOKERS/Warriors: A crew of seven 60s and 70s jazzbos that have played on over 1,000 recordings you can name band together to celebrate their post bop roots with a muscular, no bs set that takes it's lead from the 60s session, "Night of the Cookers" and let's the fur fly from there. Serious, straight ahead jazzbo stuff that's here for people that are here to listen, it's simply a smoking date that's going to sound fresh for a long time to come. Totally hot stuff.

JOE LOUIS WALKER'S BLUES CONSPIRACY/Live On the Legendary Rhythm & Blues Cruise: This might be a good argument that the best way to experience Walker is live. Here we find him out at sea with a bunch of blues and rock hitter just letting the good times roll because, well, where are they going to go. The electricity is in the air as cats that you didn't think knew each other kick it out on tunes that stray pretty far a field from the usual jam session cuts. High octane party fun that'll easily take you back to the college era roadhouses where you wasted your youth (or should have). Fun stuff throughout that makes you wish you were there.

KATHY REICHS (read by Linda Emond)/Spider Bones: Ah, the successful multimedia roman a clef. The inspiration for the TV hit, "Bones", and the real life person with her real life adventures, are back with another screwy tale of the dead and the clues they leave behind. And the squeamish can enjoy this without wincing at the blood and the guts on tv. With crisp writing, a great ear for dialog and vivid details, you can't accuse this forensic sleuth of writing chick lit for the beach. A zesty, unabridged reading that finds Bones really wracking up the frequent flyer miles to solve this one is certain to keep you on the edge of your headphones as she figures this one out long before you will. Killer mystery tale that keeps you involved throughout. It's sure to be another best seller for Reichs.

TONY DiTERLIZZI (read by Teri Hatcher)/The Search for Wondla: One of the masters of contemporary kiddie stuff kicks off a new trilogy with the story of a kid living underground that gets forced from her lair and has no idea what the ‘real' world is all about. Oy, is this going to strike a chord with a lot of kids young and old. Not only is this unabridged, it is made to be interactive on your computer so kids of all ages can have hours of fun. Simply wild stuff from a mind that must have been there, this is another feather in DiTerlizzi's cap.

Volume 33/Number 312
September 10, 2010
830 W. Route 22 #144
Lake Zurich, IL., 60047
CHRIS SPECTOR, Editor and Publisher
Copyright 2010 Midwest Record

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