Monthly Archives: July 2007

Herbie Hancock: Thrust

Awhile ago, I wrote up a quick review of Herbie Hancock’s Head Hunters album, which was one of the early jazz/R&B fusino albums.  I really got into it, especially the surround version on SACD.  The music grew on me as well, and it was with some surprise that I realized I owned the follow-up album, Thrust, and hadn’t really listened to it at all.   Having listened to it for a good part of the summer, it has also grown on me, and actually is a worthy successor to Head Hunters.  The earlier album featured a more stripped down, earthy approach to the music than “Sextant”, which was too off the wall for my taste.  However, Thrust takes that simpler formula and adds just a couple of added layers to take the music a bit further ahead.  Harvey Mason is replaced by Mike Clark on drums, giving the band a slightly more rock oriented beat, but still laying in a solid funk groove.  The tight funk of “Palm Grease” and the sublime “Butterfly” are my two favorites on this album.   The remastered version sounds fantastic, by the way.  This album gets a high recommendation from yours truly, and I feel most who liked Head Hunters will appreciate this one.

Stan Kenton in Hi-Fi: Comparisons

The CD version of this album was the first time I’d heard it. Musically, it’s a set of re-recordings of his best-known songs from earlier years, with a stellar cast of musicians, among them Milt Bernhart, Maynard Ferguson, Vido Musso and many others, anchored by Kenton’s ace rhythm section.  Musically, it is a good compilation of some of his best-known charts, re-recorded in mono and (then-new) stereo for the hi-fi age.  Kenton’s music never sounded this good!  Given that the CD was a mono reissue, I was curious to see what the original LPs sounded like.  I found both a mono and stereo version of the LP, and made my comparisons.

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Concert Ticket Craziness

What the hell is up with concert ticket prices this year?  Many years ago, I told my self that if The Police ever regrouped and toured again, there was no way I was going to miss it.  I said the same about Genesis (even if it was the three-man lineup).  Stevie Wonder is due for a concert in our area within the next few weeks, but I unfortunately had to pass on that one also.  And when the Stray Cats toured this summer, I had to miss it for the same reason: ticket prices.  What has concertgoing turned into?

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