Thursday, January 17, 2013

We Want Groove Rock Candy Funk Party w/ Joe Bonamassa J R Adventures 2013

We Want GrooveToday the mailman (person for you politically correct readers) brought me tidings of great joy which shall be to all people on January 29 2013. Child prodigy and guitar virtuoso Joe Bonamassa changes things up with his own riff on the jazz/funk vibe of the '70s and '80s with the end result being a recording that comes straight from his soul, touches your heart, and sets your hair on fire all at the same time. In short, We Want Grooove is a hell of a lot of fun. The third o in groove is not a typo but reinforces the fact that Bonamassa and the group known as Rock Candy Funk Party and throwing down a righteous groove that makes that morning latte all most pointless. If you can not find the funk here then you may be waiting for your autopsy report to come back!

Nine tracks - eight originals and one cover that are open ended but still very much harmonically driven celebrate the joy of making music simply for fun. The band takes tight to another dimension as the improvisational techniques and literally call and response between players is off the charts. I review thousands of releases each year and can say without reservation We Want Groove may be the best guitar record across any genre. The lines between jazz, funk, and rock are erased and the resulting texture is mind blowing...literally as Bonamassa can play the phone book with the six string pyrotechnics that rival some players that may have a little bit more mileage but perhaps not the musical soul the Bonamassa and Rock Candy Funk Party.

A live recording over ten days and truly a team effort finds the opener "Octopus-e" with something reminiscent of British acid jazz finally done with some real spirit. One of the main focal points of the record was to stay away from self indulgent practises that would take away from the sound of what will hopefully remain a genuine working band. The late night groove of "The Best Ten Minutes of Your Life" hearkens back to that classic Motown sound but here the groove is riden for all it is worth. Producer and drummer Tal Bergman does a masterful job in turning Rock Candy Funk Party into a most cohesive unit. Ron DeJesus plays the yin to Bonamassa's yang on guitar with Mike Merritt on bass and Renato Neto on keys rounding out a top flight rhythm section. An interesting side note for the jazz purist is that We Want Groove is a tip of the hat to the iconic Miles Davis 1982 live instrumental release "We Want Miles." A personal favorite is "Spaztastic" which is essentially groove to the 99th power fortified with a funk-a-licious attitude for flavor and texture. The title track "We Want Groove" throws down a vibe that stays with you long after the record is over.

Joe Bonamassa makes old school new cool and clearly establishes his prolific talent as perhaps the most versatile guitarist on the planet. Bonamassa feeds off the other players and they return the favor on one of the finest instrumental gems you may ever hear. A former editor often cautioned me on telling readers they will experience but I am not doing that. I am sharing my perspective on the blatantly obvious and hopefully giving you, the listener, the tools you need to make an informed decision.

For me...I dig it.

Tracks: Octopus-e; Spaztastic; Ode To Gee; We Want Groove; The Best Ten Minutes Of Your Life; Animal/Work; Dope On A Rope; Root Down (And Get It); New York Song.

Bonus DVD: The Making of We Want Groove; In The Studio (1); In The Studio (2); Official Music Video For Octopus-e