Thursday, September 30, 2010
Powerhouse Sound - Overlap (Laurence Family, 2010) ****
the first album : "New Dirt", "Coxsonne", "Acid Scratch", "2-1-75", "Shocklee", "Exit Salida". Actually, only "Broken Numbers" is a new track, penned for the band in 2007, properly rehearsed, and with two versions on this album. This repetition with their debut album more than explains the album's title.
Powerhouse Sound is Ken Vandermark on saxophones, Jeff Parker on guitar, Nate McBride on bass and electronics, and John Herndon on drums.
I think the album is much better than the first one: it has the same rhythmic power with McBride and Herndon making the music an absolute fun and funky joy. As we all know, Vandermark is a great improviser on funky beats, and he does not disappoint us here. Parker is excellent, from the raw noise to rock-like bridges, reggae touches, jazzy and rock soloing, with wah-wah and all, sometimes all in the same piece, as on "Exit Salida". Together with the electronics, Parker is a kind of jamming station for the overall sound, at times breaking the rhythms and the tempo, adding abrasive touches to smooth surfaces, adding doses of toxicity, which by itself are sometimes off-putting but when the quartet picks up the compelling rhythmic musical power out of the debris, you want to jump up and dance.
Despite the overlap, this is an easy album to recommend. If you like great rhythms, high energy playing and raw power, brought by excellent musicians, then look no further.
Watch the band with "Coxsonne" some years ago
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