New CD reviews for Eagle County
Invisible Cinema Blue Note Record3.5 stars of 5As far as modern, progressive jazz albums go, Invisible Cinema toes the line but doesnt cross over it into any new territory. But the mostly mellow-yet-exciting tone of the album (pay special attention to Parks rambunctious piano ramblings in Travelers and Praise) combined with an innovative approach to many of the compositions makes this something more than just a standard jazz listen.Nemesis begins with a single-piano-note repeat hammered out over a very basic drum and high-hat riff then adds some electric guitar freestyling to the mix. Although it doesnt sound very complex in its structure, the layers of sound in the song make it much more expressive than just straight up piano and Parks displays his mastery of letting the music show his emotion.Invisible Cinema is Parks debut on the Blue Note label but youd never know it. He makes jazz almost feel poppy and accessible, especially with the ultra-cool Roadside Distraction and Riddle Me This that feel like top-40 tracks just waiting for lyrics. Blue Note doesnt usually disappoint and putting Parks on their label was a good move. Fans of deep jazz may find Invisible Cinema too fluffy but Parks takes the mystery out of a genre that is puzzling for many.Charlie Owen, High Life writer
Stealin the Covers Moon Voyage Records1 star of 5Ive always had a problem with cover albums, even when theyre done well. It just feels lazy to me, like the artists sat down and had a meeting and said, Lets just record somebody elses songs for this album guys, we dont need to come up with anymore new songs or be creative in any way, the fans will understand. Maybe they will, but I wont. Its not that Chris Daniels and the Kings Stealin the Covers, (an excellent album title, actually) is done poorly, its just not very interesting. The covers range from Chuck Berrys Roll Over Beethoven to The Beatles In My Life to Jimi Hendrixs Crosstown Traffic; a good cross-section of American rock and roll, but I cant see anyone choosing to listen to Daniels version of the songs over the originals.The addition of a horn section does bring a lively element of funk to many of the songs, but it also makes me think of disco-era KISS, and thats something I dont want to be reminded of. Charlie Owen, High Life writer
Superhero Brother BrushfireBy now, fans should be accustomed to reviewers trying desperately to pigeonhole G. Loves music. Its R&B. Its hip-hop. Its funk. Its folk-blues-roots from a white boy from Philly who can rhyme.Whatever you call it, his new album with Special Sauce, Superhero Brother, delivers. Its smart music that plays with chords, rhythm, words and melody and makes you want to bop your head.All that you expect from G. Love is here: rhythmic vocal lines that pop, sweet melodic phrases sandwiched between busy hip-hop rhymes and syncopated grooves that wont quit.But G. Love incorporates a few new ingredients, adding to the confusion of his indefinable sound. On Communication, he takes a few cues vocally and production-wise from the Paul McCartney rocker Jet. With the radio-friendly Peace, Love and Happiness, G. Love recalls the Southern rock roots of the Black Crowes and the Allman Brothers. On City Livin, horns evoke such 70s classics as Van Morrisons Domino and Caravan.The album adds pop flavor to G. Loves music without (by any means) selling out. Its music from a man who is still having fun with his art, still discovering it and still growing into his own unique sound, whatever that might be. Moira E. McLaughlin, L.A. Times-Washington Post
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