AYELET ROSE GOTTLIEB/Roadsides: Singing in her native tongue, Gottlieb sounds like a jazz vocalist with Leonard Cohen overtones. How did Putumayo miss this for their international stuff? You don't know what's going on but these are songs loaded with poetry about distress in the middle east from all sides. If you're one of those people that wants to dig into how the world is going to hell all over that region, this music that points toward hope could be your guide to finding doves to send over there. Gringos will need interpretation but the vibe and passion carry the date beyond language.
HARRY ALLEN'S ALL STAR BRAZILIAN BAND/Flying Over Rio: What's one of (ha!, one) of the differences between me and Allen? Well, if I was him, I'd be content to play sweet jazz on my sax until time forgot me. He ain't me. He got the Brazilian itch and decided to scratch it by raiding the rosters of Zoho and Adventure for the best Brazilian players within arm's reach and let the sparks fly. No where near being a run of the mill jazzbo goes belo horizonte set, this is the smoking kind of set Sinatra would have made with Jobim if Sinatra played sax. Everything here is so on point that all I can do is shut up and listen. The sax ace shows us how it's done once again, even if he felt like changing musical landscapes to do it. Killer stuff throughout.
DIRTWIRE/Carrier EP: What's this duo sound like? Imagine Ry Cooder's kid wanting to follow in pop's footsteps but not too closely. An electro/acoustic take on Cooder's indigenous lonesome Texas blues sounds, this duo makes local, world beat for nu ears. If you don't hangout at places like Burning Man, you probably won't get, but if that's your stomping grounds, you're already nodding your head in approval.
THE BURGEONING/Love Alchemy, Life Algorithm: Over educated smarty pants shoe gaze is still alive and well.
SHAULI EINAV/A Truth About Me: In the brave new world, you can either bitch about how things ain't the way they used to be or you can do something about it for yourself. Rising sax ace Einav has decided to conquer the world two ears at a time. Personally sending advance copies of his upcoming set already out in France to scribes that have dug him in the past, he's laying it on the line a personal way, not even bothering to hide behind a fake name. What's he up to this time around? Classic Blue Note meets AACM as interpreted by a white boy. Artsy but not icy, Einav has a dandy sitting down listening date that makes it clear he's serious about what he does and he's here to stay. Sure to open your ears with it's progressive sounds, this is a date that raises the bar for all who wish to follow this path. Well done.
EASY STAR ALL STARS/Dub Side of the Moon: The posse that brought white faces to dub and made the set that sat on the reggae charts for 7 years comes back with a tenth anniversary edition of it, complete with the requisite bonus tracks just like a major label would do. Is the reggae version of "Dark Side of the Moon" still a gasser? Well, it's still fun to hear "Money" start out with a hacking cough instead of a cash register. Guaranteed, the left fielders among us like this better than the original. I give it a four ‘yes mon's, which is as high as it gets. Check it out again or for the first time, it's still a winner.
ULTIMATE NEW ORLEANS BRASS SECOND LINE FUNK!/various: Now those of you that know even a little about Nawlins know that calling this stuff second line isn't labeling it inferior. I don't want to do all your work for you so go Google it and learn something. This collection is culled from the vaults of a long time regional label that chronicled this tier of Americana long before it had a name as such. Brassy, marching band stuff that gives everything a distinct Nawlins flavor even making stuff from South Africa sound local, this is a mighty soundtrack for any yuppie party that needs to lively itself up with some domestic funk that always spells party, even when part of a funeral. A solid set of material that was originally well recorded and sounds up close and personal here. A winner throughout.
Volume 38/Number 312
September 8, 2014
830 W. Route 22 #144
Lake Zurich, IL., 60047
CHRIS SPECTOR, Editor and Publisher
Copyright 2014 Midwest Record
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