Rik Wright's Fundamental Forces — Red
(HipSync 88295133975, 2014, CD)
by Jon Davis, Published 2015-03-06Red is the second in a planned "RGB" trilogy of albums, following Blue. Of course, Green should have been next out of the gate, but the set of tunes recorded just seemed more fiery than cool, so Red it is. The same quartet is present as on the previous outing, but the energy level is bumped up a notch. "(She's So) Fragmented" tells us this right out of the gate, with a groovy unison riff featuring a guitar tone a bit more distorted than leader Rik Wright usually favors. Not that they're rocking out, but it's several steps removed from Wes Montgomery. Reedman Jim DeJoie handles the alto sax on this one (elsewhere he plays baritone sax, clarinet, and flute), and Greg Campbell has an outstanding drum solo towards the end of the track. Geoff Harper's interpretations and variations on the main riff keep the tune driving ahead without getting repetitious. As with most of Wright's writing, the composition itself is rather minimal, consisting of the bass line and a melody which together imply chords without them being explicitly played. The other tracks are constructed in similar manners; the melodies always fit without being predictable. On "Single Angularity," Wright gives us his most aggressive tone, bordering on a rock sound, though in a thoroughly jazz context. Fundamental Forces forges a path of their own, certainly not mainstream jazz, but not fusion or jazz-rock either. Red should appeal to all but the most jazz-phobic listeners of exploratory music.
Legendary Co-Founder of The 13th Floor Elevators Passes Away at Age 71 – Sadly, Roky Erickson passed away on May 31, 2019. Known as the father of psychedelic music and co-founder of the ground breaking 13th Floor Elevators, Roky had a profound influence on music from the 60s to today. Plagued by his own personal demons, Roky had a difficult life and is now free of these burdens. » Read more
Help MoonJune Bring Great Music to Life – Like many music lovers around the world, we’ve been thrilled and amazed to hear the recordings that have been released by MoonJune from sessions at La Casa Murada in Spain. Such label stalwarts as Mark Wingfield, Markus Reuter, Asaf Sirkis, Tony Levin, Dusan Jevtovic, Vasil Hadzimanov, and many more have gathered in various combinations at the studio to produce some of the most creative music in recent years. Now, label head Leonardo Pavkovic is offering a compilation, La Casa Murada - MoonJune Sessions, Volume One, as a fundraiser for upcoming sessions. » Read more
The Pineapple Thief to Tour North America – November and December of 2019 will see The Pineapple Thief bringing their music to Canada, Mexico, and the US, and famed drummer Gavin Harrison will be on board. The band has been touring extensively in Europe, but North America will be new territory for them. » Read more
Scott Walker RIP – Noel Scott Engel, better known as Scott Walker, was one of the most intriguing and enigmatic musical figures in the second half of the 20th Century. His strange career started with The Walker Brothers, an American pop group that featured no one named Walker and no brothers. After moving to England in 1965, they had a series of hit singles. Scott's solo work started with Scott in 1967. Starting in the 80s, his work took an increasingly avant-garde turn. » Read more
Freedom to Spend Unearths June Chikuma's Archives – Jun (June) Chikuma is well known for her video game and anime soundtracks, but she also released an album of experimental electronic music back in 1986 called Divertimento where she indulged the kind of spontaneity that wouldn't work in a soundtrack. RVNG Int'l label Freedom to Spend is bringing this overlooked item to broader attention with a deluxe reissue. » Read more