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Tag: instrumental music

Another Clever, Psychedelic, Ridiculously Amusing New Album From the Versatile Curtis Hasselbring

For all his noir overtones, trombonist Curtis Hasselbring is a funny guy. He’s played spy jazz and seriously straight-up jazz, but he’s also a distinctive guitarist and multi-instrumentalist with purist taste in early 80s new wave and no wave rock. In keeping with his cinematic style, he’s most recently been working his Curha project, which these days has become a one-man band outlet for his most satirical, cartoonishly psychedelic side. He’s bringing those songs to the small room at the Rockwood on April 12 at 8 PM.

Just the titles of the tunes on his latest Curha 3 album – streaming at Bandcamp – are a dead giveaway. The opening track is Seeing-Eye God, a carnival-of-souls organ theme built around a prowling boogie-woogie piano loop. On one hand, it’s unusually dark, compared to the stuff on the other two Curha records. On the other, it may be have real-world relevance, considering how the surveillance-industrial complex went warp speed in the months after March, 2020.

Hasselbring keeps the organ, adds an enigmatic guitar lead and what sounds like pizzicato violin over the vaudevillian drum machine loops in the second track, The Gravity Games, a wryly anthemic new wave chorus popping in and out unexpectedly.

Bee Alley is a Residents-style exercise in variations on a goofy bass-synth loop with an unexpectd, um, Americana-ish detour that’s too good to give away (hint: lusitanos). Boulevard of the Avatars is even funnier, a crazed but very carefully orchestrated mashup of blippy motorik sounds, an adventure theme and trippy Tom Tom Club minimalism with just a hint of genuine menace. Hasselbring also distinguishes himself here on baritone sax!

The funeral parlor Casio makes a brief return in Badly Supervised Seance. Rode on an Airplane Last Night – now THAT’S a even scarier, huh? – has Hassselbring doing a brassy big-band intro and outro around a goofy, dubby, strutting theme, a rare moment where his trombone takes centerstage.

He assembles a surreallistically textured trip-hop layer cake with A People Mover, then builds a marionettish promenade out of tinkly music-box timbres in Library of Infinite Calamity.

Then he breaks out his guitar again for Three Weird Sunsets, the missing link between George Clinton and 80s oddballs Renaldo and the Loaf. He closes the record with Everyone You Know, which could be the theme to a Martian sitcom about Jamaican Rastas in the 70s. Dare you to make it all the way through this album without smiling.


The Underwater Bosses Make a Big Splash With Their Latest Record

The mostly-monthly series of surf rock shows at Otto’s have been going on practically since the venue opened in the old Barmacy space at 14th St. just west of Ave. B more than two decades ago. Auspiciously, the dumpy little quasi-tiki bar was one of the first places to reopen without restrictions after the 2020 lockdown, which is surprising considering their draconian door policy (you’ll be carded even if you’re eighty and on a walker, so bring your passport which the ID scanner can’t read and then share with the CCP).

Next month’s show, on April 1 is a good one and starts at 8 with the Underwater Bosses, followed at around 9:30 by Tsunami of Sound and then Blue Wave Theory, The segues are good: each band is a little heavier than your typical surf act, and they all play mostly originals. The Underwater Bosses are the loudest but most eclectic of the bunch. Tsunami of Sound are the most trad. Blue Wave Theory frequently work a more enveloping Ventures spacerock side and have a ton of free downloads available.

The Underwater Bosses’ latest album The Night Divides the Ride is streaming at Bandcamp. They open with the title track, which comes across as a mashup of the Raybeats and Link Wray (no relation, actually…). Track two, Juan of the Waves is a thundering blend of Dick Dale tremolo pick-melting and a big, brassy spaghetti western theme complete with forlorn trumpet.

Guitarist Chris Stewart breaks out his roller-rink organ for The Volcano Boys, a bossa-tinged tune that wouldn’t be out of place in the Laike & the Cosmonauts catalog. Greg Bresett’s gritty bass intro to Dirk Dagger is a red herring: it’s a blazing, reverb-soaked spy tune in 5/4 time.,

If Link Wray, Dick Dale and Buck Owens had a relative in common, it would be Beach Moles. There’s all kinds of cool bass-and-guitar interplay in Rumble in Belmont and darkly straightforward blues riffage in The Black Demon of Cortez.

The web of textures, from icepick reverb to raw roar in Ride Baby is especially tasty. The amps go up even further in Sea Wolf, the album’s most bludgeoning, riff-driven number, which makes a good segue with the blasts of chords in Aqualizer.

The rhythmically trickiest, most cinematic number here is Salmon’s Lot, drummer Bob Breen leading the band up out of a spiderwalk to a big organ-fueled interlude, They bring the record full circle with The Return of the Hand, the closest thing to the Raybeats and punk rock here. This Rochester, New York-based trio deserves to be way better known.

One of New York’s Great Surf and Twang Guitarists Visits a Familiar Williamsburg Watering Hole This Week

Jason Loughlin is one of the elite guitarists in Americana because he has his own sound rather than just a deep bag of recycled country and blues licks. Much as there probably aren’t many classic country and surf rock licks he doesn’t know, he always finds a way to make them sound fresh. Big names – Steve Earle and Emmylou Harris among them – are aware of this and have enlisted his services for a long time. But Loughlin is also a bandleader, and has had a regular more-or-less monthly residency at Skinny Dennis pretty much since they opened, with a long break during the collective insanity in 2020 and 2021. He’s back there with his band on March 16 at 9.

Loughlin’s recorded output as a leader is not extensive, but what he has is absolutely brilliant. His most recent album, Peach Crate came out quite awhile ago – his Bandcamp page lists two different dates. If expertly twangy guitar instrumentals that transcend the surf genre are your thing, you have to hear this (and you may have already – getting to this one a little late!) It’s also been quite awhile since this blog was in the house at Loughlin show. If memory serves right, the last time was at the old Hank’s in 2015, where he was playing his usual tasteful, purposeful leads alongside folk noir songstress Jessie Kilguss.

He opens the record with the warm, briskly shuffling title track, a western swing highway theme with some snazzy, rapidfire guitar riffage over sailing layers of lapsteel, bassist Jason Hogue and Stephen Chopek subtly pushing the beat.

Loughlin builds an intricate web of lickety-split, tongue-in-cheek Buck Owens Bakersfield phrasing in the second track, Whoopsie Daisy. Tango and Cash is a real treat, part loping Ventures summer surf theme, part chiming countrypolitan, part Tex-Mex. Woody’s in the Hood is another gem of a mashup, a Django shuffle as noir icons Big Lazy would have done it.

Likewise, Steep Grade is a creepy, picturesque spiderwalking number, but with plenty of jokes too good to give away. The trio pick up the pace with She’s Something Sweet, a percolating blend of Bakersfield twang and elegant 60s soul. Hello Tijuana, Goodbye Kidney is not the horror tableau you might expect, but instead, a plush, lingering 6/8 ballad without words. Who knew that being on the wrong side of an organ trafficking scheme could be so enjoyable!

Loughlin builds a tight web of jump blues-flavored twin harmonies in Recordian and follows with the chugging, erudite Slack Jaw, part Buck Owens, part late-period Bob Wills, with Rich Hinman on pedal steel. Loughlin winds up the album with Headless Body Topless Bar, a slow, lurid roadhouse theme with echoes as diverse as the Raybeats and the Friends of Dean Martinez.

Darkly Ambient Americana Instrumentalists Suss Headline an Enveloping, Inviting Brooklyn Triplebill Tomorrow Night

In 2018 this blog called cinematic instrumental group Suss “the missing link between Brian Eno and Ennio Morricone – or the Lost Patrol without the drums.” They were a quintet then. Tragically, they’ve been whittled down to a trio after the sudden 2021 loss of keyboardist Gary Lieb, but they keep putting out frequently mesmerizing, sometimes Lynchian deep-sky themes. Their latest album is a double-cd release comprising both their Heat Haze southwestern travelogue suite and their even more nocturnal Night Suite along with new material.

They’re headlining a great lineup tomorrow night, Feb 8 at around 10 PM at Public Records, that shi-shi monstrosity in the former Retrofret space north of Gowanus. As a bonus, deadpan and often hilariously lyrical new wave pop spoofers Office Culture open the night at 8ish, followed by the trippy electroacoustic trio of saxophonist Dustin Laurenzi, bassist Paul Bryan and drummer Jeremy Cunningham. Cover is pretty steep for a show like this, presumably $24 since the venue is one of many in Brooklyn who seem to be oblivious to the rising popularity of #cashalways and are still trying to make it with the goofy pennies-and-nickels online ticketing fad.

Both Suss’ Night Suite and Heat Haze got the thumbs-up here. The new tracks – the first several of which you can hear at Bandcamp – are just as drifty and evocative. Beyond Jonathan Gregg’s resonant pedal steel and spare dobro, it’s impossible to tell whether that’s Pat Irwin or Bob Holmes on the many other guitar and keyboard tracks. The first is a miniature, Winter Is Hard, rising from a delicate little piano figure to a flaring slide guitar peak and then out.

The band blend keening ebow textures, slow doppler effects, stalagmite piano drips and icepick reverb guitar incisions in North Wind. The most lingering thing in Linger is the gentle, precise acoustic guitar and the reverbtoned steel over the puffing, echoey loops in the background. Everything Is So Beautiful is steady and sad and Lynchian, and over too soon.

By now, the band are working variations on that initial crystalline three-note theme, notably in the rising and falling icy/hot textures of The First Thaw. Then they reprise Winter Was Hard with some unexpected timbres like autoharp and some gritty mechanical whirs.

At this point, you will have to switch to yucky Spotify to hear the rest of the record. Across the Horizon is aptly vast but peppered with warmly anticipatory fragments of blues and C&W riffs. The band warp the sustain a little in Ranger as a solitary acoustic guitar surveys the great plains, then in Shimmer (Reflection) they bring back the delicate quasar pulse: a distant Blue Velvet galaxy.

Holmes breaks out his mandolin and slowly works his way up in the mix in That Good Night. They waft their way out with the gentle phrases in The Open Door, shifting slowly through a characteristically twilit tableau.

Pensively Drifting Soundscapes and a Falafel Hill Show by Eclectic Film Composer Qasim Naqvi

Qasim Naqvi‘s raison d’etre seems to be getting the max out of the min. As a drummer, he propels the world’s most compellingly hypnotic live dancefloor instrumentalists, Dawn of Midi. Prior to the 2020 lockdown, he was a member of another even more adrenalizing trance-dance band, Innov Gnawa, who were the only oldschool Moroccan gnawa group in this hemisphere. And Naqvi has yet another identity, as a busy film composer. He’s on the bill at Roulette tomorrow night, Feb 5 at 8 PM, playing live soundtracks to Peter Burr video installations along with MIROVAYA LINIYA (Julia Pello & Heinrich Mueller’s dystopically cinematic Heisenberg Principle-influenced duo). You can get in for $25 in advance.

Naqvi’s 2017 album Film, streaming at Bandcamp, may hold the key to what you can expect. It’s a collection of hypnotic, calm and sometimes suspensefully minimalist miniatures from Naqvi’s two soundtracks to Naeem Mohaiemen films on industrial-wasteland themes. It’s best appreciated as a cohesive whole: tune in, bliss out. It’s testament to the fun you can have with oldtime equipment…and get paid for it.

As the set pieces unwind, subtly varied textures drift through the mix, wafting drones punctuated by icy accents. Climbs, echoes and calm/animated contrasts give way to steady doppler waves, which grow further and further apart, a pensive meditation on slow postindustrial decay. Naqvi spices his soundscapes with the occasional wry rhythmic trope or burst of cumulus clouds over the horizon. On the surface, this is very soothing music, but listen closely and you’ll find a persistent unease.

The World’s Most Cinematic Guitarist Continues His Dark Dynasty

It was the spring of 2016, and cinematic instrumental trio Big Lazy had just finished slinking their way through a slowly simmering, increasingly macabre, chromatically slashing crime theme. The Brooklyn bar was packed, and people were dancing, notwithstanding the band’s somber, noir-drenched sonics.

Then guitarist Steve Ulrich took the mic and led the band through a brisk if somewhat wistful new wave song. Half the audience did a doubletake: a Big Lazy song with lyrics, in a major key, no less!

But fans of Ulrich’s signature blend of nocturnal bristle, deep-sky twang and white-knuckle improvisational scramble know that he has a completely different body of work. In addition to Big Lazy – the first band to top the best-albums-of-the-year lists here twice, in 2014 and 2019 – Ulrich does a lot of work in film and other media. His soundtrack to the artworld forgery documentary Art and Craft ranges from his signature, shadowy style to more lighthearted terrain. And now, he’s finally released a compilation of some of his most vivid and surprisingly eclectic soundtrack work from the NPR series This American Life, due to hit his Bandcamp page. Ulrich is celebrating the release of the album with a characteristically epic night on Feb 4 at 7 PM at the Sultan Room, playing a set with a string quartet, then bringing Big Lazy in to close the evening. The venue is easy to get to from the Jefferson St. stop on the L; like a lot of the trendier Brooklyn joints, they’ve become enamored of weird online dollars-and-cents cover charges, meaning that $26 cash should get you in.

On one hand, this is the great lost Big Lazy album. On the other, it’s more texturally diverse and slightly more lighthearted: the increased use of keyboards is a newer development for Ulrich. Typically, he’ll lay down a simple, muted riff and then judiciously add layers.

The first track, Earthly begins as a klezmer-tinged, lithely pulsing, delicately disquieted cha-cha, drummer Dean Sharenow spacing out his playfully counterintuitive hits, keyboardist Thomas Bartlett channeling a deep-space cabana with his lightly processed piano. Ulrich orchestrates bass and lapsteel into the mix as well.

The group slowly straighten out into a dark, wry strut in Handheld as Ulrich’s layers of skeletal guitar and resonant lapsteel mingle with Bartlett’s occasional roller-rink organ. In track three, The Swell, they trace a similar light-footed path, following a familiar Ulrich pattern, shifting almost imperceptibly out of the shadows into a sunny pastoral theme and then back.

Fellow Traveler is not a Chinese army song but a syncopated waltz with hints of dub and classic country, courtesy of Ulrich’s baritone guitar work. Surprise, Arizona is a Big Lazy concert favorite that first took shape in the wake of a 2019 tour, a stern Appalachian theme that diverges into mysterious sagebrush.

Ulrich’s sense of humor tends to be on the cynical side, but Rinse Cycle – the loopiest number here – is irresistibly funny and a good example of how far afield he can go from Big Lazy noir when he feels like it. He begins Housebroken as a forlorn bolero over Sharenow’s shuffling snowstorm beats: it’s the closest thing to Big Lazy here and the album’s creepiest song.

The most jazz-inflected tune here is If and When, a classic example of how Ulrich can take a whimsical theme and turn it inside out in a split-second, Bartlett shadowing the unfolding menace with his airy fills. The most brisk tune here is Unpretty, which is actually very attractive, in a delicate, melancholy vein

Bookworm turns out to be an apt coda, a bouncy swing tune where Ulrich flips the script on his usual trajectory. It’s still January, but Ulrich just might have given us the answered to the question of what the best album of 2023 is.

La Banda Chuska Put a Darkly Psychedelic New Spin on a Classic Cumbia Sound

La Banda Chuska played their first-ever gig on a Monday night in October, 2019 at a Brooklyn venue known for eclectic and unpredictable programming, One of the band members explained that their big influence was Los Belkings, one of the most surf-inspired of the great Peruvian psychedelic cumbia bands from the mid-to-late 1960s. These Brooklynites slunk and wafted their way through a handful of that band’s more ornate, psychedelic instrumentals, but they also played a bunch of originals that ranged from short and punchy to lush and cinematic. Calmly and intricately, these guys (and women) really slayed with a sound that’s hardly ever heard this far north: when were they going to play next?

We know what happened next. The good news is that the band survived the lockdown to release a debut ep at Bandcamp last spring. They’re playing second on one of those sprawling multi-band bills that Drom puts on every January as part of the annual booking agents’ convention. Whether that convention served any useful purpose before the lockdown is a useful question, but it always resulted in some great shows. This Jan 14, the group are hitting the stage there at around 8:30 PM, preceded by Greek surf band Habbina Habbina, who open the night at 7:30. Perennial party favorites Slavic Soul Party play their funky Balkan/hip-hop/Ellington mashups afterward at 9:30, then at around 10:30 Red Baraat’s fiery bhangra soul trumpeter Sonny Singh leads his band. After that, Mafer Bandola plays bouncy Venezuelan joropo llanero, around half past midnight Iranian violinist and bandleader Mehrnam Rastegari leads her group, with electroacoustic drummer Ravish Momin’s Sunken Cages doing their woomp-woomp dancefloor thing to close out the night. If you have the stamina for it, this could easily be the best concert lineup of 2023: general admission is $20.

The first song on the debut ep is Cumbia Chuska. Adele Fournet plays a pulsing, vaguely sinister progression on her organ, then a guitar – that’s either Sam Day Harmet or Felipe Wurst – comes in with an ominous spaghetti western riff over the undulating groove from bassist Abe Pollack and drummer Joel Mateo. Accordionist Erica Mancini floats in, then one of the guitarists hits his fuzz pedal. This is creepy fun!

Track two is Surf en CDMX, a catchy mashup of Ventures spacerock and uneasy Peruvian chicha with a deliciously clangy guitar interweave. The women in the band join voices in Arcoiris, which is not a bright rainbowy theme but a ghostly, airy, keyboard-driven undersea tableau that rises to a big guitar-driven peak and then a wry Fender Rhodes solo out.

From there they segue into Cine Olaya, where they do something predictable yet irresistibly fun with a slow, broodingly vampy chicha vamp. The final cut on the record is Playa Privada, a surreal mashup of the B-52s, Los Crema Paraiso and maybe the Police. We need more from this imaginative, original crew.

Ferocious, Individualistic Surf Band 9th Wave Washes Into Alphabet City This Weekend

Although surf guitar icon Dick Dale went to the great tiki bar in the sky in 2014, his legacy of rolling thunder instrumentals lives on in Mike Rosado, frontman of 9th Wave. The Connecticut surf band have been around about half as long as Dale and have been through some lineup changes over the years, but the good news is that they survived the lockdown intact and are back playing shows again. They’re at Otto’s on Jan 7 at 9:30 PM, in between two of the most popular New York surf acts to crash onshore in the past couple of decades: the jangly Supertones, who open the night at 8, and the cinematic TarantinosNYC,, who by both talent and default have become this city’s top surf act.

When 9th Wave started out in the 90s, they had a reggae bass player and a more slinky groove. By the time they put out their 2003 album Time Tunnel, they had developed one of the most distinctive sounds in surf rock, Rosado machete-picking the low strings with his reverb turned up all the way while the rhythm section pummeled behind him and Sandy, the band’s organist and multi-instrumentalist, added roller-rink textures for a new take on a hotrod surf sound.

They haven’t put out an album since 2016 and because they go back to the cd era, not a lot of their studio material has made it to the web beyond their music page. There you’ll find Beyond Neptune – a catchy, clangy detour toward wistful 60s Britpop – and the scrambling hotrod theme Dragon Wagon 2016, along with a handful of earlier tracks. They also have a Sonichits page with a lot of live videos from the Time Tunnel era (you have to click on the play button next to each track, then click play  on the video when it comes up).

A future daily New York music blog owner took the time to catch the band several times when they were playing New York a lot. At the C-Note on February 9, 2001, they cranked out a surprisingly brief 35-minute set on a fantastic quadruplebill, sandwiched between two all-female bands, the snarky, guitar-fueled B Loud Three and the scorching twin guitar-fueled Sit N Spin, with brooding Pacific Northwest gothic band the Scholars headlining. At that show, Rosado was joined by an excellent second guitarist who shared a fixation with punchy lower-register riffage.

On February 24, they became one of the loudest bands ever to play CB’s Gallery, the mostly acoustic annex adjacent to CBGB. Their set opening for rockabilly band the Blind Pharaohs was a lot longer, and featured Sandy doing snakecharmer fills on her flute when not behind the keys and floating over Rosado’s relentless, percussive attack.

Their return to the C-Note was two days short of a year later and the absence of a second guitarist didn’t keep Rosado from churning up the sand. This time they were in the middle of a phenomenal lineup that included rising lit-rock star Ward White, a horn-fueled performance from ska band Tri-State Conspiracy at the peak of their career, future “cemetery & western” cult hero Mark Sinnis & 825, and New York Dolls-influenced punk band the Pale Imitations. The sound mix was muddy, but 9th Wave’s set list was excellent, the highlight being an amped-up version of one of their slower songs, Spy Lounge.

Inspiring true story: Rosado survived a horrific fire later in the decade to regain the use of his hands and his other limbs, and returned to play as ferociously as ever. .

A Killer Twangy Guitar Triplebill in Bushwick on the 16th, Barring the Unforeseen

New York seems to be in the very early stages of a turnover in music venues. It’s completely balkanized at this point, but there are good things happening on the ground if you look hard enough. One excellent triplebill at an unexpected spot is coming up this Nov 16 at 8 PM. A couple of rewardingly unorthodox surf bands, the Zolephants and the bracingly Middle Eastern and Greek-flavored Byzan-tones open for guitar goddess Barbara Endes’ wickedly catchy janglerock band Girls on Grass at Wonderville, a bar and video arcade at 1186 Broadway in Bushwick. Take the J to Kosciuszko St.; it’s a pass-the-bucket situation.

The Zolephants are a side project for cinematic psychedelic Americana iconoclast Ben Lee a.k.a. Baby Copperhead. In this instrumental project, Nami Coffee’s mono bass synth bolsters Lee’s twangy, judiciously layered guitar multitracks over Bill Bowen’s drums. Their 2018 cassette release Islands of Neptune is still up at Bandcamp.

The opening number, Legend of the Black Snake starts out like late 70s Can and then goes fast forward a couple of decadea, in a Phantom Surfers direction before coming full circle on a much more disquited note. The second track, Speed Demon also echoes the Phantom Surfers: you could also call it a clangier take on the haphazard sound Man or Astroman were mining in the early 90s

Seven refers to the time signature. It’s funny and surf-insider-y AF. Track four, sarcastically titled Cheesy Intro, follows a familiar chord progression and then diverges into a long, rewardingly unpredictable sequence.

Truth or Consequences is a coy bolero-beat southwestern gothic theme. Fueled by a snappy bassline, Hey! Solid Citizen balances fuzzy, sailing synth and catchy guitar jangle. The closing number, Scratch starts out as if the band are going in a moody flamenco-surf direction, but they make quasi Egyptian reggae out of it instead.

Their somewhat more traditionalist 2016 debut ep is also up at Bandcamp as a free download. The first track, Bleeding Lungs is a brisk, skittish take on a loping desert rock theme. They open Behind the Fortress slowly and expansively before taking it into edgy hash-infused rembetiko rock.

Number 9 is the most psychedelic tune here, a loopy, trippily rhythmic tune underneath a wry Beatles-inspired samples pastiche. The trio electrify an old Greek gangster theme, Black Eyes, with some gritty tremolo-picking from Lee: it’s the band’s best song, at least among the Bandcamp tracks. They close the record with a goofy, skronky miniature.

Trippy, Texturally Luscious Oldschool Soul Jams From the Ghost Funk Orchestra

When the World Economic Forum and the Gates Foundation engineered the fascist takeover of New York in March of 2020, Ghost Funk Orchestra bandleader Seth Applebaum bunkered down, wrote and got a new album out of it. He began the project as a one-man band, more or less, but by the summer of 2019, when the group got a rave review here for a midtown Manhattan show, they’d grown into a beast of an oldschool instrumental soul band.

Their latest album A New Kind Of Love – streaming at Bandcamp – is their most psychedelic and eclectic yet. The instrumentation and production is totally classic 60s: reverb on the guitar and drums, snappy trebly bass, plus layers of organ or vintage electric piano and horns in places.

The first cut, Your Man’s No Good is an artful mashup of Isaac Hayes vintage soul sprawl, Menahan Street Band crime-soul and a little Hugh Masekela. Track two, Scatter comes across as dub Isaac Hayes: hypnotic, spare bass riffage, chicken-scratch guitar beneath lingering chords, a tantalizingly snarling Applebaum guitar solo and a trick ending.

The loopy, dubwise vibe continues in Prism, a twinkling Hollywood Hills boudoir soul jam. Quiet Places is actually anything but quiet, a swaying, brassy study in lo/hi contrasts, grim fuzztone versus starry gleam.

The album’s title track is a two-parter: Applebaum shifts between slow, slinky Quincy Jones soundtrack noir and dub-infused funk in the first, then closes the album with the second, a hazy early 60s summer-house theme with a gritty psych-soul coda.

Megan Mancini sings Why?, a hypnotically catchy slow jam, then sticks around for Blockhead, a steady, vampy groove where Applebaum flexes some judicious jazz chops in tandem with flutist Brian Plautz.

Baritone saxophonist Stephen Chen floats and bobs over the latin soul shuffle of bassist Jeremy Stoddard Carroll and drummer Mario Gutierrez in A Song For Pearl. Then the band go back to a drifting milieu with Bluebell, a pensively swaying love ballad with Mancini on mic again. The closest thing to straight-up psychedelic rock here is the Doorsy next-to-last track, Rooted. So far 2022 has been a relatively slow year for psychedelia in general, but this is one of the most enjoyably immersive records of the year.