SPOKFREVO ORQUESTRA/Ninho De Vespa: We're going ethnic Brazilian here in a big, wild way. Leaving samba way behind, this is frevo music amped up and turned on it's head by a veritable Buena Vista Social Club of Brazil. Not nearly a session of dusty "cultural" music, this is a wild and wooly set for party people that want to jam with a 17 piece band that would rather stand than sit on a bunch of hot peppers, even if they play like it. The set card is loaded with tunes by progressive Brazilians that are getting traction here and a killer jam is the universal language. This stuff just smokes and anyone looking for a good time will enjoy it's freewheeling spirit to the max. Check it out.
FLYING COLORS/Second Nature: Steve Morse is hiding out in a group identity but he can't hide the long, blond hair or the prog meets fusion on the corner of Zappa chops that power this set along in fine style. Assuredly right in the pocket for anyone that knows what I'm talking about, this is a real shrederoonie that goes the distance in the proper measure. Genre fans will go nuts.
SEAN NOONAN/In the Ring: And the highly creative drummer rounds out his multimedia trilogy that starts out way in left field and gets weird from there. Not my cup of tea but for those who are ready for something completely different...
BERNIE MARSDEN/Shine: You got to love it, this guitar man is hanging out with David Coverdale and Joe Bonamassa yet he kicks things off with a nod to John Koerner. Nothing like shredding with some high profile pals that play like they dig playing with you. This sounds and feels like an overdue break out for a journeyman that still has energy to spare.
The ONE-DERFUL COLLECTION-The One-derful Label/various: A guy from K-Tel was trying to get this going back in 1998 but it seems like Chicago's Leaner family is finally getting their due with this initial set, part of a six record series, that highlights and focuses on one of the great 60s Chicago soul labels. If you thought you knew everything about northern soul, you're about to get a wake up call as most of the label's 185 single output is generally unknown outside Chicago even if they were well known to their compatriots. Raw, crazy stuff that will never be mistaken for Detroit or Philly, or even Brunswick or Chess, this is primal stuff that'll blow your ears wide open and make you wonder why they don't make over the top soul like this anymore. Killer stuff and long overdue.
RENO 911 The Complete Series: A cult classic that came along right before the golden age of basic cable originals began to flower, the six seasons of this show that came to an end in 2009 are here for you to unspool over a grand 32 hours of binge viewing. With a guest cast featuring just about every contemporary comic you want to see no matter where your taste runs, the core cast of the show, featuring the mom from "The Goldbergs", disassemble life in Washoe County with dispatch and humorous aplomb. Seasoned mostly with the kind of dry humor that makes you wonder if you heard what you think you heard and saw what you think you saw, this is a sterling laugh riot throughout. Unedited and with a bunch of extras and outtakes, this is a sure bet to have you rolling on the floor and questioning authority. This complete series set is a grand, overdue send off to the future classic "anti" (inverted?) cop show.
JEFF DUNHAM/All Over the Map: After listening to enough Dunham, I have to wonder what people are talking about when they bitch he's not edgy enough. I think they just look at a cat playing with dummies and don't go any farther below the surface. His characters and the things they say are pretty out there, he just gets it over by using under the radar tactics. Here, Dunham turns the tables on the haters by taking his characters around the world and having them "perform" in places they shouldn't---often by law or edict. Funny is funny, outrageous is outrageous and he doesn't need to change a thing, especially since the fans seem to out number the haters. Give the cat a break and share the laughs he's bringing to the table this is a veritable laugh riot.
GABRIEL IGLESIAS/Presents Stand Up Revolution 3: Hot on the heels of finishing it's network run, Fluffy and his pals (and cartoons) are ready to come home with you. Since you know Fluffy and Martin can't be all that PG rated, this set holds nothing back and the greatest of today's ‘underground' comics is ready for his close up, Mr. DeMille. Ever wonder how 2.5 hours could pass so quickly and leave your sides hurting so much? Cue this baby up and let the Fluffmeister (that's right, whitey's taking over here in the frat house) do his thing. A grand time throughout.
THE EXES-Season 1 & 2: Hot on the heels of the season 4 premiere comes the DVD launch of season 1 & 2 in a single pack of this bromance comedy that shows more of the downside of contemporary middle age. The on going comedy adventures of three heterogeneous guys who are so screwed in their various divorces that they are forced into living like the odd trio is loaded with solid laughs from a cast powered by comedy vets who never really go to flash their comedy chops as leads. Since 23 episodes makes up two seasons of a show these days, you can catch up on everything you missed in less than 8 hours (which is why nobody reads anymore?). Crazy goods time in a sitcom format.
HOT IN CLEVELAND season five: Why is this the most watched original show in the TVLand channel's history? Because Sean Hayes is one of a very select few that enjoyed the sitcoms he grew up on in the 60s that he knows all the pas de deux needed to make a successful TV sized show in the traditional way without making it seem contrived but without straying too far from home base. This spiritual pre-quel to "Golden Girls" even keeps the spiritual continuity by having Betty White in the cast. While menopausal humor with a daffy edge might not be everyone's cup of tea, distaff viewers, "I Love Lucy" fans and others will find spending 24 minutes with these aging broads better than slugging it out with their real life counterparts. You know it's got to be ringing somebody's bell to be consistently slugging it out of the park the way it does even if it isn't your cup of tea.
Volume 37/Number 11
November 11, 2014
830 W. Route 22 #144
Lake Zurich, IL., 60047
CHRIS SPECTOR, Editor and Publisher
Copyright 2014 Midwest Record
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