BILL PHILLIPPE/Parade: Work with me if you will. Imagine old time Leonard Cohen recording with a jug band mixing it up with a zydeco band in the outskirts of Nawlins. It's a particular art to make music that makes you want to commit suicide without giving you the impetus to follow through but Phillippe has this ability to give you white man's blues with no hope of there being a light at the end of the tunnel. Sure to become a dorm room staple of privileged white boys wondering what's the use.
GINGER ST. JAMES/One for the Money: This ain't this gal's first time to this rodeo but if you haven't heard her yet, here's an introduction to one of your new faves. A rocking, rockabilly gal that isn't trying to channel Wanda Jackson, she might have a foot in the old world but she's a contemporary, pomo gal all the way. Rocking her way out of a mental Appalachia, this doll ain't no China doll as evidenced by her writing, shredding, singing and smoking attitude. A breath of fresh mountain air throughout, this rebellious sassy siren is sure to knock you off your pins like you haven't been in quite some time. Killer stuff.
ANTI-NOWHERE LEAGUE/The Cage: The high octane energy is still there but punk rock has become so ubiquitous that it doesn't seem sinister anymore. The buzz saw, amphetamine energy is still in full effect, and they are as pissed off as ever, but where's the danger? This sounds like something you could play in the car with your pissed off grand child, and not because you're trying to be cool and relate. Where's the danger? This sounds like a pop alternative. At least send me that punk rock girl you're singing about. Geez, I'm looking for danger, not something that sounds like it'll roll over the credits of the next Martin Scorsese movie.
DAVE HOSLEY/Love for Sale: In which we give you the chance to divine between Mark Murphy and lounge singers. There's crossover here between the two but Murphy styled vocalese is replaced here by lounge lizard bebop as performed by a San Francisco lounge lizard of four decades standing. Having the chops to loungeize Carole King with Cole Porter and Tom Petty (?), he doesn't try to channel Sinatra preferring to bring his own vibe to the fore. Recording his debut set at Fantasy studios, he gleefully absorbed the jazz that's been recorded there over the last half century and let it out on this over due debut recording. Purely classy verve for those times you really want to feel like a grown up.
J & D WARREN
JEREMY WARREN/I Can Do All Things: The title of this drummer's album is no idle boast. Coming up to New York from down home, he's taken his place in line managing to play with everyone that matters. This is a diversely textured album that plays like something deeper than a resume piece but does show off the various points of his diversity scale. A jazzbo that came up through gospel, he knows how to share and play well with others which will probably assure his spot at the back of the bandstand for a long time to come. Well done.
JUSTIN PIPER/Avant Funk: If this isn't exactly your idea on funk, there's good reason. This is a cat with a lot of far ranging interests. The guitar man comes to us from the classical world where his muse takes him to the middle east. From there, he kicks it out in his local Boston area as an improv jazzer on 8 string guitar. A fun house ride of a date that'll make the cilia in your ear canals stand up at attention, he's a jazzbo that plays like a shredder. Ain't nothing wrong with adapting to our mixmaster world when the tour guide has it together like Piper. Check it out.
LaVON HARDISON/Come Together: A sweet voiced jazz vocalist with a background in opera and the church tackles an easy going set card of songs you probably didn't think you wanted to hear again---until to hear them in her new settings. A great kicking back album for when you just want the day to unfurl in front of you, as long as she chose to give "Sunny" another spin rather than hitting us over the head with "Nature Boy", we'll give this album extra credit and won't make her stay after class. Speaking of class, this is a classy jazz vocal album by a pro that spiffs up her game each new time out.
WILL GOBLE/Consider the Blues: This bass playing extended musical family member of the Marsalis clan shows he's not just another white boy with the blues. Using blues changes as his starting point and adding the jazz from there with other of his Marsalis band mates, Goble feels free to push creative envelopes to let the vibe wail. A solid session that plays with feeling and spirit, Goble shows he has great ear/hand/brain co-ordination in executing his vision here. Tasty stuff any jazzbo will feel at home with, whether he thinks he's in a bluesy mood or not. Well done.
NEW JAZZ STANDARD ORCHESTRA/Waltz About Nothing: Chicago's once thriving commercial music scene gave local jazzbos the stability to do whatever they wanted at night and not worry about putting food on the table. There was some great jazz going around in those days. This Chicago aggregation shows the commercials might be gone but the passion for stellar big band jazz remains. Never sounding corny or dated, this crew's second spin keeps it as fresh and bursting with vibes as the debut. High octane and high energy, this is classic jazz made for today's ears that really want to swing. Killer stuff throughout.
MAC GOLLEHON & the Hispanic Mechanics: One of those background cats that been on over 100 gold records and tons more that weren't gold but probably one of your faves no matter what style of music you like, he kicks it out under his own name here and shows he's still looking toward the future no matter what he‘s done in the past. Loving his trumpet as much as he loves electronics and Latin jazz, Gollehon plays this in off the clock fashion, not worrying about session notes from a clueless label exec and letting the party flow---even if it feels like it might be taking place on Mars some of the time. Wild stuff from a cat that loves his work and sounds like he's committed to always taking it to the next level of the game. Check it out.
Volume 39/Number 195
May 14, 2016
830 W. Route 22 #144
Lake Zurich, IL., 60047
CHRIS SPECTOR, Editor and Publisher
Copyright 2016 Midwest Record
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