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ADAIR-ALIQUO/Too Marvelous for Words: Nashville's queen of jazz steps away from her gift shop releases, brings her regular trio in tow and adds a swinging sax man offering up a be bop feeling blowing date where you wouldn't know the keyboard ace is the real ringleader of this show. Working out on classics that you didn't think had anything new left in them, this bunch hits it all right out of the park. Playing at the level pros like them should be and showing utter comfort in doing so, this is a jazzbo treat deluxe. Well done throughout.

AUBURN/Mixed Feelings: Just like the Brits did to us with the blues, they've come to Nashville and recorded a killer set of Americana which they are now selling back to us. Getting away from the usual radio driven fodder, Auburn makes wonderfully atmospheric music that feels inspired by Ry Cooder but the lyrics are delivered in such a way that unless you really listen closely you miss how this stuff reads like the kind of country that first turned rappers on to Johnny Cash because he was such an OG. This set is equally strange and magical and sure to entice you in ways you never imagined. This is the kind of off the beaten track stuff boomers have been clamoring for. Killer stuff that really takes you by surprise.

ADIR L.C./Oceanside Cities: Millennial indie pop. Sheesh. Remember how stupid hippies sounded when they were talking about dropping out and finding themselves? Millennials are even more smug than they seem on the Net Zero broadband commercial and this is their sound. Self indulgence never sounded so, well, self indulgent. Sheesh again.

MORAZ ALBUM PROJECT/MAP: For my money, Pat Moraz has been one of the great unheralded rock era keyboard players because he plied his trade as a pinch hitter in big but faceless bands. Here we find him nearly 50 years in, kicking it out with an old pal on an off the clock/one for me set that finds him flexing the sum total of all his years in the game but playing with no dust on him. It's all here, prog, jazz, classical---all the sounds that made him Moraz. Brought into the present with a dandy mixture of bombast and chops this is the nu version of the cat that first turned your head for good in Refugee---still doing it. Hot stuff.

MICHAEL DEASE/Decisions: The bone man and his pals hit it out of the park right from the first note. A penultimate jazzbo treat, they have their daddio hats on but the players aren't mired in the past at all. Just a solid groove that doesn't quit, stuff like this reminds you why you started listening to jazz in the first place before it got watered down with too much fad and fashion. Killer stuff.

BUDDY GUY/Born to Play Guitar: The usual suspects are on board but they have changed up the sounds to give it more of a retro vibe this time around--- but they added Joss Stone to the mix to keep it in the now. There's a bunch of other top notch guests as well but Stone is the only one that brings the sexy. Holding her own sure footedly on a trail she started when she went toe to toe with James Brown--hey, this is how left field hit singles are made. A killer set from a cat that's been kicking out for 60 years, this is state of the art contemporary blues that unabashed about letting it's roots show. Top shelf throughout.

GABRIEL ALEGRIA AFRO PERUVIAN SETET/10: The coast might be wrong but this sounds like a New York take on zesty Afro Cuban jazz. No matter, the crew celebrates its 10th anniversary by inviting guests like Ron Carter, Russ Ferrente Art O'Farrill and others equally skilled to the party to let the good times roll. Whether kicking it out on originals or classics, gringos will love the musical change of scene as it's kept fresh every minute of this set. If your ears can discern this is Latin jazz you might not be as familiar with, go along for the ride anyway. It's a winner throughout.

Volume 38/Number 284
August 11, 2015
830 W. Route 22 #144
Lake Zurich, IL., 60047
CHRIS SPECTOR, Editor and Publisher
Copyright 2015 Midwest Record

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