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CLIFF HINES/Wanderlust: Talk about taking Nawlins mix mastering to the next level of the game... Here we have old pros and up and comers, every kind of jazz/world sound you can think of thrown into the gumbo and an unstoppable vibe that sounds like tomorrow all simmering nicely into the wildest stew you can imagine. Certainly not your grandpa's Nawlins jazz outing, this is certainly for the forward thinking that want to explore the future with something solid rather than something cute for the sake of cute. While it's not for everybody, the far left leaning will probably love it.

NEXT COLLECTIVE/Cover Art: Jazzbos covering pop tunes of the day is nothing new. The thing that's new is what they can do with the tunes when they go beyond a straight reading. This crew tackles rappers, shoe gazers, and others that populate the non jazz world. You won't recognize a lot of the arrangements, and that can be a good thing. Riding a highly progressive tip, there is a strong hip hop attitude running through this as linearity is tossed out with window with a certain amount of glee. These guys could easily turn things on their ear like US3 did when they were hitting it. Certainly a wonderful, wild ride for those that know how to hang on.

TOM MORGAN/Orange Syringe: The lyrics guy from Lemonheads doesn't want to go back to the outback so after some wood shedding, he comes back as a stripped down, lo fi folkie bringing the Townes Van Zandt for a new generation. Armed with a lot of down in the mouth stuff, he isn't an angry old man, just a wizened observer passing on what he's learned. Lo-fi is the perfect platform for where he is now and old fans will be able to pick up the thread even after almost 15 years away.

JUDY KANG: Moving from Julliard to Lady Gaga as easily as she moves from ambient to a Stradivarius, Kang blows open the stereotypical tiger mom progeny being a hot chick that masters classical violin before puberty. For all the pop chops she has under her young belt, this is a shining example of a wonderful record that many will not know what to make of. The Zappa influence can be felt from her work with Boulez. The far east stuff, that's a given. Ambient, jazz, classical? It's all here, often at once. Perhaps it's best to call it head music for the new age. Her chops are impeccable and it might just be that she has so many of them they are all fighting to get out at once. Not out there in the sense of Sun Ra, but out there anyway, if you want something out of the normal that'll blow your mind, maybe like Wendy Carlos did way back, this is the place. Think YMO (another the stops along her way) and you'll have a feel for the kind of out there this is. Wild stuff throughout.

BUDDY GUY/Live at Legends: The guy's fresh off a Kennedy Center award and he's introduced here as the baddest motherfucker in town? Couldn't they have said in the world? C'mon, it was the Kennedy Center and all. Kicking it out live at his club in January 2010 well before the Kennedy thing, Guy was turning up the heat because that's what he does. Mixing live tracks with some unreleased stuff from the vaults, Guy fans will not be disappointed that these are not new recordings. The smoking is too much in evidence. Totally live, loud and proud, he might be a lion in winter but he is not going gently into that good night. Upholding his usual blistering standards, this is blues and beyond for contemporary times.

Volume 36/Number 61
December 31, 2012
830 W. Route 22 #144
Lake Zurich, IL., 60047
CHRIS SPECTOR, Editor and Publisher
Copyright 2012 Midwest Record

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