Sunday, October 19, 2014

Robert Plant Lullaby and...The Ceaseless Roar Nonesuch 2014

The most expansive Robert Plant solo release thus far...
Brent Black /
If you have to "learn to like" something then the substance is not really there and this is where the release falls apart. Lullaby and...The Ceaseless Roar is an overly ambitious melting pot of sound, texture and genre and that simply don't work. Plant's voice would seem to be in fine form. There are occasional glimpses of harmonic genius on some of the original tunes. The bluegrass bookends would seem to be left from the Alison Krauss release. There is simply too much happening at any one time and with minimal direction. While hard core Plant and Zeppelin fans are probably lining up outside my front door with pitch forks and flaming torches, a certain sense of objectivity is merely tossed out for your consideration.
An intimate exploratory of sound, Plant is on record as describing this as a celebratory record, powerful, gritty, African, Trance meets Zep...I call it a train wreck. Rock and roll gumbo gone wrong, want to do another Zeppelin record then do it. The middle eastern vibe Zeppelin embraced was a key part of their harmonic DNA, this just fills time. It is creative but to what extent? Does Plant have anything left to say? I don't think so and I think on closer examination if the hardcore fan is honest they may well agree but taste is of course subjective.
This is Robert Plant trying to reinvent his musical wheel...It didn't happen.
2 Stars.

Busting The Democratic Ebola Lie

See...If President Ebola had never allowed these people in then - NO ISSUE....
President Ebola ignored the warning and the appropriate people were not properly prepared which is again President Ebola's fault...Democrats will never accept responsibility for their Messiah's stupidity. Somewhere in Georgia and Texas, Carter and Bush are laughing their ass off!

Nax Natsuki Tamura & Alexander Frangenheim CS 2014

Nax is an intimate yet bold excursion into the world of free improvisation, a stellar offering!

Brent Black /

Free improvisational music occasionally gets a bad rap as many consider it little more than a shotgun approach to what we consider jazz, just blast away and hope you hit something. Trumpeter - composer Natsuki Tamura and classically trained bassist Alexander Frangenheim burn the harmonic candle at both ends and manage to magically meet in the middle. The extremity of Tamura colors pairs nicely well the rhythmic variety offered up from Frangenheim. The end result is a open ended spatial exploration into where a true lyrical conversation can take two artists. Extracted shades of color nuanced with a texture that gives up a little something new with each subsequent spin of the disc.

A spontaneous combustion of sound. Dynamics flow and evolve with their own organic pulse including "Acun 1" an abstract mosaic of sound and a slightly more focused "Acun 2" which embraces a melodic narrative yet without traditional theoretical restraints. These are a series of conversations, a free form call and response meticulously performed while working without a net.

Why does the release work? Expect the unexpected, the predictability is an illusion. An amazing duo performance on a myriad of levels.

Tracks: Acun 1-10


Tyler Porch Band Only The Sky Knows 2014

A true blues / rock hybrid, Tyler Porch Band has unlimited potential!
Brent Black /
The band is good now with the potential to be great soon, very soon! So often blues rock bands stick their head out much like Punxsutawney Phil only to see their shadow and in most cases never return. If they do get the all clear then the end result is a watered down knock off you can hear in any bar and in any city on every Saturday night because let's face it, the music is fun to play! Only The Sky Knows from Tyler Porch Band just doesn't play the notes they make the music.
This debut EP packs a powerful punch with a more organic stripped down yet straight ahead blues line that is filled with passion and all well written originals! A lyrical depth of field separates this release from the pack which is somewhat unheard of for a more traditional power trio. A collaborative effort of real music played by real musicians. Taste and interpretation is always subjective so if you dig a raw blues rock sound check out:
or from You Tube their single:
Tracks: Who I Am; Oh, Lady; Only The Sky Knows; Jess; My Love; Leftovers From Woodstock.
Personnel: Tyler Porch: Guitar and Vocals; Brad Kemp: Bass; Joey Robertson: Drums

Ebola Satire From The New Yorker

As a music critic there are a few weapons in my arsenal called sarcasm and satire...I dig them both. I do not dig bad taste when our country is facing a tremendous health crisis caused directly by the incompetence and stupidity from the acting President who was elected based on race and not on qualifications as he has none...After 911, America elects a President with a Muslim name? No wonder our education system is a complete joke. We have educated a generation of functioning morons.
Read...From The New Yorker.  I dig satire, I hate bad taste.
CANTON, OH (The Borowitz Report)—An Ohio man has become infected with misinformation about the Ebola virus through casual contact with cable news, the Centers for Disease Control has confirmed.
Tracy Klugian, thirty-one, briefly came into contact with alarmist Ebola hearsay during a visit to the Akron-Canton airport, where a CNN report about Ebola was showing on one of the televisions in the airport bar. “Mr. Klugian is believed to have been exposed to cable news for no more than ten minutes, but long enough to become infected,” a spokesman for the C.D.C. said. “Within an hour, he was showing signs of believing that an Ebola outbreak in the United States was inevitable and unstoppable.”
Once Klugian’s condition was apparent, the Ohio man was rushed to a public library and given a seventh-grade biology textbook, at which point he “started to stabilize,” the spokesman said.
But others exposed to the widening epidemic of Ebola misinformation may not be so lucky. “A man in Oklahoma was exposed to Elisabeth Hasselbeck on Fox for over three minutes,” the C.D.C. spokesman said gravely. “We hope we’re not too late.”

The reality of incompetence below...
Don't be this guy...

The liberals have all the answers and all the knowledge though because their Messiah said we had more to worry about with the flu...Really? Is homie THAT stupid? I believe the Muslim in Chief got a law degree so I doubt he took too many microbiology classes...Thanks President Ebola for leading the sheep right off the cliff. Payback is coming in November.

Michel Morissette Nothing Toulouse Effendi 2014

Michel Morissette is a harmonic beast and easily the best guitarist you may have never heard of!

Brent Black /

I left the position of contributing to a variety of publications with a desire to go on my own musical journey. Good critics need to take what they like and what they know and move past that as there are thousands of independent artists including those working for small labels that need a voice, I wanted to be that voice. Stumbling into Quebec guitarist Michel Morissette my quest had been answered once again. Morissette's latest Nothing Toulouse is one of those rare releases that can touch your heart and set your hair on fire all at the same time! Sounds like? Artistic comparisons are seemingly fraught with peril but in this particular case they can give you a baseline from which to consider their artistry. Imagine Mike Stern and Danny Gatton got into a bar fight on the way to a Steve Morse show and you would at the very least be in the ball park.

The sound may not necessarily be new but the execution is flawless. The voicing may lead more towards the rock end of the spectrum but it is the innate ability of improvisational passion that pushes Morissette into a special category, an edgy swing with a blues you can use! Organic  passion on a shiny silver disc personified by such gems as "Blues For My Baby" and the touching "Ballad For My Soul." The closer "Awareness" is an odd metered swing with plenty of bite and an improvisational edge that you simply don't here other artists attempting. Clean angular lines yet with an emotive passion that moves Morissette into the often over used category of virtuoso.

A critic is a musical prospector or sorts as they sift through the sand and silt of the forgettable and nondescript wreckage of those that would be better off pursuing a teaching career. Michel Morissette is the real deal, Canada's best kept improvisational secret. Intense passion without pretentious overkill is a tough gig to master but Nothing Tolouse makes it look easy!

Sample on iTunes!

Tracks: Nothing Toulouse; Blues For My Baby; Impulsions; Le Chant; Do It; Sortie Ste Therese; Ballad For My Soul; Awareness