D-Tension: The Violence of Zen

Boston-based MC and hip hop producer D-Tension is back with another album of killer beats, wicked lyrics, and righteous indignation.

The album starts with “Fresh,” which itself starts with a sample of someone saying, “Beats are the worst.  Nobody likes beats.”  D-Tension then proceeds to slice and dice through jaw-dropping beats provided by DJ Emoh Betta.  D-Tension is “Fresh like Febreeze” when he enters a room, and immediately gets your attention with his skills.  “Godly” brings rhymes from indie rappers Diamond D and A.G.  Diamond talks of being godly on the mic and D-Tension warns other MC’s of faking it (“This hip hop shit’s much more than a hobby.”).  A.G. proclaims he was “resurrected between Third and Cypress,” name checking other hip hop gods out of respect.

“What Happen to That” (featuring Akrobatik on guest vocals) is a groovy track with D-Tension reminiscing about “when bad meant good” and when you could still hook up to free electricity at the basketball court and throw your own party there.  He admits it wasn’t all great times, however, and how things are much different now.  “Landlord Song” is a great example of D-Tension’s humor as he blasts his landlord for renting him a place with broken air conditioning, plumbing leaks, and gouging him on rent.

“Do You Comprehend” is a sizzler with guest vocalists Pace Won and M Dot.  The looped baritone sax is great, as are the rhymes – such as Pace Won thinking his life is so screwed up he should just chuck hip hop and go play for the Lions or Rams.  “Deal with the Devil” isn’t another song about D-Tension’s lease with his landlord, but rather about how D-Tension takes down inferior MC’s.

“Young Love” is a song about “the ones who got away” and D-Tension’s crushes as far back as fourth grade and being the only Puerto Rican in the small Indiana town where he attended middle school.  It’s all true.  Full disclosure: I was there.  D-Tension and I were pals in middle school.  He was the funniest guy I knew then, and he’s still among the funniest people I know now.

“Scandalize” has D-Tension name checking Bruno Sammartino and Devo in the same verse, so that alone makes the track outstanding.  “Roaches,” with its jazz lounge groove, is, believe it or not, a song about the gentrification of his old neighborhood and D-Tension being baffled at how the hipsters, artists, and new landlords eliminated the pests that plagued him and his friends all their lives.  “Talk White” slams racism, economic inequality, and educational disparity with D-Tension’s slick mic work.

The Rolling Stones loop on “Piss You Off” alone is worth the purchase price of this record as D-Tension admits being “king of the prank” and how much he enjoys ribbing others.  The album ends with “Rosebud,” an ode to D-Tension’s first love – a blue Schwinn bike.

Zen is a path of simplicity.  “Every day life is the path,” as Zen master Nan-Sen once said.  Yet we shouldn’t forget that some Zen masters carried a big stick to crack us across the back to shatter our illusions and bring us back into the moment.  D-Tension acknowledges his past, but doesn’t stay mired there.  He’s too busy making rent money and embracing the now.  The Violence of Zen is his stick waking us from our open-eyed slumber.

Keep your mind open.

[I’ll crack you with a stick if it will remind you to subscribe here and now.]

Caroline Rose – Loner

 

I first heard Caroline Rose when I got sent a press release about her first single off her album Loner.  The song was “Money,” and it ended up being one of my favorite singles of 2017.

Loner, it turns out, is already one of the best releases of the winter.  Her deft use of organs, synths, and keyboards turns the record into a blend of psychedelia, power pop, and electro.  Plus, she’s one of the wittiest songwriters I’ve heard in a while.

“More of the Same” is a great opener about ennui and people wanting to be individuals just like everyone else.  She unleashes impressive vocal chops as she sings about all of her friends having “alternative haircuts,” school being a colossal bore and a haven for crushed dreams, and wanting to get away from the ruts the world at large has created for her.  “Cry!” reveals Rose’s love of Devo in the opening synth chords.

“Money” adds spaghetti western guitar and is one of the wildest cuts you’ve heard in a long while.  Rose flat-out admits, and calls us out on, how much of her / our day-to-day activity is for the pursuit of cash.  The roller rink keyboards of “Jeannie Becomes a Mom” perfectly sum up the fear, joy, and uncertainty of the song’s subject.  Plus, the electric beats are wicked.

“Getting to Me” includes what sounds like a plucked violin as Rose sings about the  life of a waitress who craves more out of life but yet is a master at her craft.  Rose gets a David Lynch-vibe going on “To Die Today” with its echoing guitar, subtle percussion, and her haunting vocals about the feeling and release of death.  It’s fitting that the follower is “Soul No. 5,” a song about embracing life (“I ain’t got a job, but I got a lot of time.).  The synths during the chorus are exuberant, and they’re laced with surf rock on “Bikini” (a song about the benefits of sex appeal and the objectification of women).

The stabbing synths of “Talk” push the desperate narrative of the lyrics, in which Rose sings of blissful, sexy silence with her lover.  The closer, “Animal,” with its synthesized handclaps and trippy keys, is a sexy song about two lovers in the throes of passion.

The whole album is a mix of sex, death, mishaps, and comedy.  In other words, it’s about real life.  Rose might consider herself a loner, but she’s really all of us.

Keep your mind open.

[We’re not in this for the money, just your subscriptions.]

Radiohead announces U.S. tour for summer 2018.

Just in time to celebrate the twenty-fifth anniversary of their debut album, Pablo HoneyRadiohead have announced a 2018 U.S. tour beginning in July and running through August.  The dates are as follows:

Sat-Jul-07 – Chicago – United Center

Tue-Jul-10 – New York – Madison Square Garden

Wed-Jul-11 – New York – Madison Square Garden

Fri-Jul-13 – New York – Madison Square Garden

Mon-Jul-16 – Montreal – Bell Centre

Tue-Jul-17 – Montreal – Bell Centre

Thu-Jul-19 – Toronto – Air Canada Centre

Fri-Jul-20 – Toronto – Air Canada Centre

Sun-Jul-22 – Detroit – Little Caesars Arena

Mon-Jul-23 – Columbus – Schottenstein Center 

Wed-Jul-25 – Cincinnati – US Bank Arena

Thu-Jul-26 – Pittsburgh- PPG Paints Arena

Sat-Jul-28 – Boston – TD Garden

Sun-Jul-29 – Boston – TD Garden

Tue-Jul-31 – Philadelphia- Wells Fargo Center

Wed-Aug-01 – Philadelphia – Wells Fargo Center

Tickets go on sale tomorrow.  Don’t wait to get them.  They will sell out, and resale prices will be high enough to enrage you and them (Radiohead have railed against ticket scalpers for years.).

Keep your mind open.

[Don’t wait to subscribe either.]

Rewind Review: Betty Davis – Nasty Gal (1975)

Funk mistress Betty Davis classic 1976 album Nasty Gal has recently been remastered and re-released.  If you’re looking for a funk record, a make-out record, or a diva record – look no further.  Nasty Gal is a trifecta of all that.

The title track opens the album, and Davis comes out swinging with her proclamation to an ex-lover that she is a nasty gal, and her ex will now miss her freaky self after she leaves him for spreading lies about her.  It’s a fierce vocal performance that instantly lets you know that she wasn’t screwing around in 1976.

As if the opener wasn’t freak enough, the next track is “Talkin’ Trash,” which is all about dirty talk during freaky sex.  “Do whatever you want to do to me.  Be a freak, I don’t care.  Tell me what gets you off,” she sings while an antsy guitar churns behind her.

“Dedicated to the Press” has great slap bass propelling Davis’ takedown on 1976 media.  She feels bad that they can’t understand where she’s coming from or that they won’t join her on the ride.  “You and I” is a lovely jazz ballad about deciding to leave a lover.  “Feelins” has a fast groove that should’ve been the theme to a third Cleopatra Jones film with its “Hey!  Hey!  Hey!” chants and car chase beats.

“F.U.N.K.” has Davis giving shout-outs to Steve Wonder, Tina Turner, Al Green, Jimi Hendrix, Aretha Franklin, Funkadelic, and others.  “Gettin’ Kicked Off, Havin’ Fun” has Davis purring about having a good time and encouraging a lover to not be afraid to get down with her.  The organ and bass work on “Shut Off the Light” is outstanding, and Davis’ vocals are downright intimidating as she pretty much demands a sweaty romp before bed.

The groove on “This Is It” makes you feel like a bad ass, but just know that you will never be half the bad ass Betty Davis and her crew were on this record (or any other time, really).  The album ends with one of her sexiest tunes ever – “The Lone Ranger.”  There’s not much I can write about this song that would do it justice.  I can’t guarantee that this song will get you laid, but I’d say playing it will probably improve your chances by at least fifty percent.  Davis’ voice moves around you like the hands of a masseuse and her band mixes funk and psychedelia to produce an intoxicating brew.  “Is it true that you want to hi ho my silver?” Davis asks.  Yes.  The answer to that is always “Yes.”

This is the album you wish was the soundtrack to your sex life, even if you won’t admit it.

Keep your mind open.

[Don’t forget to subscribe before you shut off the light.]

 

Smashing Pumpkins announce (almost) reunion U.S. tour for 2018.

Smashing Pumpkins on 5/10/91 in Chicago, Il. (Photo by Paul Natkin/WireImage)

Smashing Pumpkins have had a countdown clock on their website for days now, and it finally ended to reveal a 34-city not-quite-a-reunion tour for 2018.  It’s not a full reunion because front man Billy Corgan and original bassist D’arcy Wretzky have been involved in a public feud via social media regarding Wretzky not being asked to join the tour.

Regardless, Corgan and guitarist James Iha and drummer Jimmy Chamberlin are soon criss-crossing the U.S.  on the “Shiny and Oh So Bright Tour.”  Tickets go on sale February 23rd, and I suggest not waiting too long to get them.  I’m sure many venues will sell out fast.

July 12 — Glendale, AZ @ Gila River Arena
July 14 — Oklahoma City, OK @ Chesapeake Energy Arena
July 16 — Austin, TX @ Frank Erwin Arena
July 17 — Houston, TX @ Toyota Center
July 18 — Dallas, TX @ American Airlines Center
July 20 — Nashville, TN @ Bridgestone Arena
July 21 — Louisville, KY @ KFC Yum! Center
July 22 — Atlanta, GA @ Infinite Energy Arena
July 24 — Miami, FL @ AmericanAirlines Arena
July 25 — Tampa, FL @ Amalie Arena
July 27 — Baltimore, MD @ Royal Farms Arena
July 28 — Philadelphia, PA @ Wells Fargo Center
July 29 — Uncasville, CT @ Mohegan Sun Arena
July 31 — Boston, MA @ TD Garden
August 1 — New York, NY @ Madison Square Garden
August 4 — Pittsburgh, PA @ PPG Paints Arena
August 5 — Detroit, MI @ Little Caesars Arena
August 7 — Montreal, QC @ Centre Bell
August 8 — Toronto, ON @ Air Canada Centre
August 11 — Columbus, OH @ Schottenstein Center
August 13 — Chicago, IL @ United Center
August 16 — Kansas City, MO @ Sprint Center
August 17 – Indianapolis, IN @ Bankers Life Fieldhouse
August 19 — St. Paul, MN @ Xcel Energy Center
August 20 — Omaha, NE @ CenturyLink Center
August 21 — Sioux Falls, SD @ Denny Sanford Premier Center
August 24 — Seattle, WA @ KeyArena
August 25 — Portland, OR @ Moda Center
August 27 — Oakland, CA @ Oracle Arena
August 28 — Sacramento, CA @ Golden 1 Center
August 30 — Los Angeles, CA @ The Forum
September 1 — San Diego, CA @ Viejas Arena
September 2 — Las Vegas, NV @ T-Mobile Arena
September 4 — Salt Lake City, UT @ Vivint Smart Home Arena
September 5 — Denver, CO @ Pepsi Center
September 7 — Boise, ID @ Ford Idaho Center

Keep your mind open.

[No angry social media stuff here, just music news and reviews when you subscribe.]

Makeness to unleash debut album and tour in April.

Makeness Announces Debut Album, Loud Patterns,
Out April 6th On Secretly Canadian

Watch The Video For New Single “Stepping Out Of Sync”
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_SaXuy2isS0

North American & European Tours With Unknown Mortal Orchestra This Spring

Makeness is pleased to announce his debut album, Loud Patterns, coming out April 6th on Secretly Canadian. Crafting tracks which make a virtue of disparate influences, Kyle Molleson manages to pull off something difficult: songs which have been tirelessly worked on, although sound loose-limbed and to-the-point.

Loud Patterns is noticeably indebted to house and techno; there are 4/4 rhythms, and a no-nonsense directness that harks back to the Detroit pioneers. Channeling avant-garde experimentalism and an outsider’s interest in pop, Kyle embraces the distance between those two poles.

Loud Patterns arrives after a series of releases that have established his particular, in-between approach to dance-minded music. He put out two EPs on Manchester-based imprint Handsome Dad, a one-off single with Adult Jazz and self-released Temple Works EP; Whities also released a limited-edition white label of a Minor Science dub of one of his tracks.

Along with today’s announcement, Makeness is sharing a video for his new single, “Stepping Out Of Sync.” “‘Stepping Out Of Sync’ for me is about losing a little bit of a grip on reality,” says Kyle. “There’s a big nod to the world of pop music in the track and I wanted to reflect that in the video too. Josha and Felix, who directed the video, came up with this great time splicing technique using a custom 3-camera rig. The idea was to use the technique as a character in the video to add a sense of detachment from reality and subtly invert the upbeat aspect of the music. I had also been talking to my friend Maddie who is a brilliant dancer about working on some choreography for the video. These aspects seemed to come together perfectly when Josha and Felix started sending ideas across. I think the video really captures the range of emotions that exist in the track, it’s upbeat and positive aspect alongside a layer of dissonance and confusion that lies under the surface.”

Following the release of Loud Patterns, Makeness will tour with label kin Unknown Mortal Orchestra across North America and parts of Europe. Makeness will play his largest venues to date since his last North American trip with Jungle in December 2017. A full list of dates is below.

Watch Makeness’ “Stepping Out Of Sync” Video:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_SaXuy2isS0

Watch & Listen:
“Day Old Death” video –
https://youtu.be/m6n5q58560M
“Day Old Death” stream – https://makeness.lnk.to/dayolddeath
“Loud Patterns” stream – https://makeness.lnk.to/loudpatterns
Makeness Tour Dates:
March 1 – March 3 – Oslo, Norway @ by:Larm
April 12 – @ London, UK @ Corsica Studios
April 22 – Northampton, MA @ Pearl Street w/ Unknown Mortal Orchestra
April 23 – Portland, ME @ Port City Music Hall w/ Unknown Mortal Orchestra
April 25 – Brooklyn, NY @ Brooklyn Steel w/ Unknown Mortal Orchestra
April 26 – Brooklyn, NY @ Brooklyn Steel w/ Unknown Mortal Orchestra
April 27 – Washington, DC @ 9:30 Club w/ Unknown Mortal Orchestra
April 28 – Philadelphia, PA @ Union Transfer w/ Unknown Mortal Orchestra
April 30 – Boston, MA @ Royale w/ Unknown Mortal Orchestra
May 1 – Montreal, QC @ Corona Theatre w/ Unknown Mortal Orchestra
May 2 – Toronto, ON @ Danforth Music Hall w/ Unknown Mortal Orchestra
May 3 – Chicago, IL @ Vic Theatre w/ Unknown Mortal Orchestra
May 4 – Minneapolis, MN @ First Avenue w/ Unknown Mortal Orchestra
May 7 – Seattle, WA @ The Moore Theatre w/ Unknown Mortal Orchestra
May 8 – Vancouver, BC @ Commodore Ballroom w/ Unknown Mortal Orchestra
May 9 – Portland, OR @ Roseland Theater w/ Unknown Mortal Orchestra
May 10 – Oakland, CA @ Fox Theater w/ Unknown Mortal Orchestra
May 11 – Los Angeles, CA @ The Wiltern w/ Unknown Mortal Orchestra
May 12 – Pioneertown, CA @ Pappy and Harriet’s w/ Unknown Mortal Orchestra
May 18 – Hamburg, Germany @ Uebel & Gefährlich w/ Unknown Mortal Orchestra
May 19 – Berlin, Germany @ Kesselhaus w/ Unknown Mortal Orchestra
May 20 – Heidelberg, Germany @ Karlstorbahnhof w/ Unknown Mortal Orchestra
May 21 – Düsseldorf, Germany @ zakk w/ Unknown Mortal Orchestra
May 22 – Paris, France @ La Gaîté Lyrique w/ Unknown Mortal Orchestra
May 24 – London, United Kingdom @ Roundhouse w/ Unknown Mortal Orchestra
May 25 – Bristol, United Kingdom @ SWX w/ Unknown Mortal Orchestra
Loud Patterns Tracklist:
1. Loud Patterns
2. Fire Behind The 2 Louis
3. Who Am I To Follow Love
4. Stepping Out Of Sync
5. Gold Star
6. The Bass Rock
7. Day Old Death
8. Rough Moss
9. Our Embrace
10. 14 Drops
11. Motorcycle Idling


Photo by Dexter Lander

L7 unleash new single, “I Came Back to Bitch,” and U.S. spring tour dates.

L7, as usual, aren’t screwing around.  Case in point, their new single, “I Came Back to Bitch.”  This will soon be your new favorite song and is already sure to be one of my top ten singles of 2018.

They’ve also announced some spring U.S. tour dates.  Don’t miss them.  They were great when I saw them in Chicago a couple years ago.  They haven’t lost an inch.

04/11 – Boston, MA @ Paradise
04/13 – Philadelphia, PA @ Trocadero
04/15 – Cleveland, OH @ Beachland Ballroom
04/16 – Milwaukee, WI @ Eagles Club
04/18 – Indianapolis, IN @ Vogue
04/19 – Minneapolis, MN @ First Avenue

Keep your mind open.

[I’ll come back to your e-mail if you subscribe.]

Unknown Mortal Orchestra’s new album, “Sex & Food,” due April 6th.

UNKNOWN MORTAL ORCHESTRA ANNOUNCE NEW ALBUM,
SEX & FOOD, OUT 4/6 ON JAGJAGUWAR

WATCH THE VIDEO FOR “AMERICAN GUILT”
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4-JlcmCxIXU

Today, Unknown Mortal Orchestra proudly announce their new record, Sex & Food, which will be released April 6th via Jagjaguwar. The follow-up to their critically acclaimed record Multi-Love, Sex & Food sees UMO mastermind Ruban Nielson tap into both familiar and unexpected territory. The delightfully shape-shifting album filters real-deal serious themes such as “What are we consuming? How is it affecting us, and why does everything feel so bad and weird sometimes?” through a vibrant sonic lens that spans battered drum-machine funk, doomy and thrashing rock, and pink-hued psychedelic disco. It’s not a dark record, per se. Even the album’s title, Sex & Food, focuses on two of the most undeniably pleasurable experiences in life; positivity despite the strangeness of our times. The album was recorded in a variety of locales from Seoul and Hanoi to Reykjavik, Mexico City, and Auckland, not to mention Nielson’s home base studio in Portland. It is a practical musical travelogue, traversing the world as well as a wide spectrum of human experience. Nielson grapples with new, sometimes dismal realities, but succeeds in pulling the epiphanies from the chafe. Watch the video for the first single, “American Guilt,” and pre-order the album below. Additionally, here is some context behind “American Guilt” from Ruban Nielson:

“American Guilt” is an attempt to capture some of the feelings floating around these days. In a perverse way I wanted to embrace this abandoned genre of rock music that I keep reading is “dead” and invite people to hear what this living dead genre sounds like in the UMO universe. It was recorded in Hanoi, Vietnam during monsoon season in a studio built for traditional Vietnamese music. Additional recording was done in Mexico City but our sessions were interrupted by one of the devastating earthquakes that occurred there last year. As we slept in the Parque de Mexico, unable to get back to our Airbnb, we heard a man yell “viva la Mexico!” and I put this in the song out of respect for them.

WATCH “AMERICAN GUILT” VIDEO
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4-JlcmCxIXU

EMBED:
<iframe width=“560” height=“315″ src=“https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4-JlcmCxIXU” frameborder=“0″ allow=“autoplay; encrypted-media” allowfullscreen></iframe>

PRE-ORDER SEX & FOOD
https://unknownmortalorchestra.lnk.to/sexandfood 

SEX & FOOD TRACKLISTING
1. A God Called Hubris
2. Major League Chemicals
3. Ministry of Alienation
4. Hunnybee
5. Chronos Feasts on His Children
6. American Guilt
7. The Internet of Love (That Way)
8. Everyone Acts Crazy Nowadays
9. This Doomsday
10. How Many Zeros
11. Not in Love We’re Just High
12. If You’re Going to Break Yourself
 
UNKNOWN MORTAL ORCHESTRA TOUR DATES:
April 22 – Northampton, MA @ Pearl Street w/ Makeness
April 23 – Portland, ME @ Port City Music Hall w/ Makeness
April 25 – Brooklyn, NY @ Brooklyn Steel w/ Makeness
April 26 – Brooklyn, NY @ Brooklyn Steel w/ Makeness
April 27 – Washington, DC @ 9:30 Club w/ Makeness
April 28 – Philadelphia, PA @ Union Transfer w/ Makeness
April 30 – Boston, MA @ Royale w/ Makeness
May 1 – Montreal, QC @ Corona Theatre w/ Makeness
May 2 – Toronto, ON @ Danforth Music Hall w/ Makeness
May 3 – Chicago, IL @ Vic Theatre w/ Makeness
May 4 – Minneapolis, MN @ First Avenue w/ Makeness
May 7 – Seattle, WA @ The Moore Theatre w/ Makeness
May 8 – Vancouver, BC @ Commodore Ballroom w/ Makeness
May 9 – Portland, OR @ Roseland Theater w/ Makeness
May 10 – Oakland, CA @ Fox Theater w/ Makeness
May 11 – Los Angeles, CA @ The Wiltern w/ Makeness
May 12 – Pioneertown, CA @ Pappy and Harriet’s w/ Makeness
May 18 – Hamburg, Germany @ Uebel & Gefährlich w/ Makeness
May 19 – Berlin, Germany @ Kesselhaus w/ Makeness
May 20 – Heidelberg, Germany @ Karlstorbahnhof w/ Makeness
May 21 – Düsseldorf, Germany @ zakk w/ Makeness
May 22 – Paris, France @ La Gaîté Lyrique w/ Makeness
May 24 – London, United Kingdom @ Roundhouse w/ Makeness
May 25 – Bristol, United Kingdom @ SWX w/ Makeness
May 26 – Manchester, United Kingdom @ Strange Waves
May 27 – Leeds, United Kingdom @ World Island
May 28 – Brussels, Belgium @ Ancienne Belgique w/ Makeness
May 31 – Barcelona, Spain @ Primavera Sound

June 10 – Hilvarenbeek, Netherlands @ Best Kept Secret Festival
July 6 – Richmond, VA @ The National w/ Shamir
July 7 – Asheville, NC @ The Orange Peel w/ Shamir
July 8 – Atlanta, GA @ Variety Playhouse w/ Shamir
July 9 – Athens, GA @ Georgia Theatre w/ Shamir
July 11 – New Orleans, LA @ Republic w/ Shamir
July 12 – Houston, TX @ White Oak Music Hall w/ Shamir
July 13 – Austin, TX @ Stubbs BBQ w/ Shamir
July 14 – Dallas, TX @ Granada Theater w/ Shamir
July 16 – Englewood, CO @ Gothic Theatre w/ Shamir
July 17 – Ogden, UT @ Ogden Amphitheater w/ Sylvan Esso, Shamir
July 18 – Las Vegas, NV @ Vinyl at Hard Rock
July 19 – Phoenix, AZ @ Crescent Ballroom
August 10-11 – Copenhagen, Denmark @ Haven

 

Download hi-res images here: http://jagjaguwar.com/press/umo/
UMO Online:
https://twitter.com/umo
http://unknownmortalorchestra.com/
http://instagram.com/unknownmortalorchestra
http://www.jagjaguwar.com/artist.php?name=umo
https://www.facebook.com/unknownmortalorchestra

Keep your mind open.

[Don’t be an unknown.  Subscribe.]

Rewind Review: Lionel Hampton and the Golden Men of Jazz – Just Jazz: Live at the Blue Note (1992)

Take a powerhouse jazz lineup and let them go wild in a legendary club and you get a great record like Just Jazz: Live at the Blue Note by Lionel Hampton and the Golden Men of Jazz.

Hampton was a legend on the vibraphone and his equally famous backing band included bassist Milt Hinton, drummer Grady Tate, trombonist Al Grey, saxophonist James Moody, pianist Hank Jones, flugelhorn player Clark Terry, saxophonist Buddy Tate, and trumpeter Harry “Sweets” Edison.  According to the liner notes of this album, the average age of the band in 1992 was 72.  They were still killing it and teaching youngsters a way of jazz you rarely hear anymore.

The opener, “Corner Pocket,” is tune originally written for Count Basie and has great back-and-forth fun between Hampton, Grey, and Terry.  The title track was written by Al Grey for the show and the whole band has a blast on it.  Everyone gets their turn in the spotlight and Moody especially cooks with a great solo.

Tate sings lead vocals on “Body and Soul” while Hampton and Jones stroll along beside him with their respective instruments.  “God Bless the Child” is an instrumental cover of the Billie Holiday classic with Hampton taking lead on it like the grooviest tour guide you’ve ever met.

“Ring Dem Bells” (originally a Duke Ellington song) is great fun as Hampton encourages each band member to shred a solo.  Edison rips it and Jones’ solo is so good that it almost sounds like he’s goofing throughout it.  The album ends with “Flyin’ Home” (apparently a favorite of Hampton’s to close a show) and has fabulous saxophone work throughout it and Hampton having a blast and laughing through parts of his solo.

This is a great jazz record, live or otherwise, and a worthy addition to your jazz collection (or any collection, really).

Keep your mind open.

[Just subscribe.  You’ll feel better.]

Levitation Austin announces further lineup acts for 2018 festival.

The latest additions to the lineup for Levitation Austin have been announced, and (no surprise) they’ve added more great acts.  Ty Segall and Thee Oh Sees adding second shows is great news for fans who couldn’t make one or the other.  Count me in for Segall’s Friday show, especially since Ron Gallo will also be playing the same night and location.  Other additions that caught my eye are No JoyTrue WidowPow!L.A. WitchJjuujjuu, and Holy Wave.

It’s quickly getting to the point where set times will be announced and sacrifices will have to be made to determine which shows we can make.  Plus, tickets will go even faster once set times are determined.  Don’t wait much longer to get your tickets.

Keep your mind open.

[Don’t forget to subscribe before you split.]