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RICARDO SILVEIRA & VINICIUS CANTUARIA/RSVC: The first pairing by these two seminal, modern Brazilian music figures is an elegantly simple date of just guitar and vocal that sounds more like a lost Jobim album than anything else. Maximizing the power of subtlety and simplicity, this utterly wonderful set is heartwarming and engaging throughout. Tasty stuff that you just won't be able to get enough of. Well done.

MIKA STOLTZMAN/If You Believe: Granted everything has fallen apart. Granted jazz marimba isn't exactly mainstream. Granted that if Stoltzman had to resort to Kickstarter to fund a session produced by Steve Gadd and featuring Richard Stoltzman, Eddie Gomez, John Tropea and others of that caliber, something is wrong. At least she gets the last laugh and gets to keep ownership of the masters. Speaking of masters, this set is some of the brightest, funnest jazz to come along in quite some time. Mastering the art of lively sitting down jazz, Stoltzman is so on the money here, you're a dope if you just don't sit back and enjoy it First class stuff throughout that's practically a master class in marimba as well. Check it out.

DELBERT McCLINTON/Under Suspicion The ABC Sessions: Back in the day, I couldn't understand why these albums sunk like a stone. History has shown it wasn't McClinton's fault and that it was because ABC was a sucky label. Raven adds another chapter to their survey of McClinton's major label odyssey with the addition of these three early solo albums on ABC after the break up of Delbert & Glen. White, honky tonk soul throughout, the players on board are the cream of the crop playing their hearts out and McClinton shows the soul that led John Lennon to harmonica because of McClinton. Tasty, savory, hot as a hot pepper stuff that shows he was right under your nose all along. A killer serving of hot stuff that needed to escape from the vaults.

RICKY KEJ/Shanti Orchestra: A leading commercial music producer in India, Kej marshals his chops in service of a world beat session that takes it to the next level of the game. Using an international crew of players rather than just manipulating multi culti electronics, a new commercial sensibility is brought to new age/world perhaps being the gateway that ushers in a new acceptance for a new generation of artists. Craftily engaging as is subtly merges soundscapes into jazz, this world wise set is a real grabber that goes the distance. Wonderfully brilliant stuff that opens the ears mightily.

ALIFIC/Echoes From the Soul: Skanking riddims infused with electro and down tempo vibes is on tap here. Music to fire up and mellow out to, this is killer dorm room funk just right for when smoke is wafting through the halls. Loads of fun and great jams are running throughout helping you in your continuing efforts to achieve ultimate flatness. Eire!

JUSTIN MORELL/Subjects & Compliments: They say the life cycle of a family business is from shirt sleeves to shirt sleeves in three generations meaning the grandchildren can fuck up everything the grandparents built. Looks like they would be wrong about Carl Fischer's grandson. With the leg up of coming form two previous generations of musicians, Morell launches his dectet by doing more than indulging in his Marty Paich fantasies. Already having made his bones across a wide spectrum, the only thing he indulges here is his chops that straddle jazz and classical. Leading a bunch of leaders in tow, this snazzy guitar man delivers a killer sitting down jazz extravaganza that has all the stuff that makes you open your wallet with glee. Charting a clear path in his way to the top, Morell delights in fine style throughout. Check it out.

ALI BELLO/Connection Caracas-New York: How come a well seasoned jazz violin cat from Venezuela sounds more Hot Club minus Django than Latin? Does it matter? This is heady stuff that shows he's in control of his ax and his art. A wonderful, indefatigable set that just keeps right on delivering like you wish the post office would. A killer set throughout.

JAKE HERTZOG/Throwback: The young ax master changes things up just a bit by adding Randy Brecker to his regular trio for some extra fusional zip. Other than that, he's still that super picking tyro that knows how to wield an ax like a knife. The only real difference here is that he's hit the ripe old age of 27 and his playing reflects the maturity and depth picked up along the way. Other than that, he's just as right on as ever. Hot stuff throughout.

Volume 37/Number 326
September 23, 2013
830 W. Route 22 #144
Lake Zurich, IL., 60047
CHRIS SPECTOR, Editor and Publisher
Copyright 2013 Midwest Record

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