Album Reviews

BASIA BULAT: Heart Of My Own

Basia

Secret City Records

Never mind the obvious differences, there’s a track on this album called “Gold Rush’ that’s a significant clue to what this collection’s all about. More than anything else, it resonates best with Neil Young’s “After The Gold Rush” in terms of scope, ambition and a unique approach to pushing the form forwards.

The tunes here are largely shaped by Bulat’s imagined idea of a mythic Yukon before she’d ever set eyes on the place and the fact they were all written on the road, a new experience for Bulat. Even the ones not overtly Yukon-influenced carry an ambience of re-imagined times and places.

THEE SILVER MT.ZION MEMORIAL ORCHESTRA

Constellation

Kollaps Tradixionales
Constellation

And Godspeed You! Black Emperor begat Thee Silver Mt. Zion Traditional Orchestra and it went on to give itself lo, a different name for each album and yeah, many players came and went but 15-minute songs remained unto this, Thee Silver’s sixth album.

Kollaps Tradixionales comes with a different name and the usual line-up changes but it’s unmistakably the work of main man Efrim Menuck and his band of punked-out experimentalists. The lineup’s down to one guitar now but in fact Kollaps... contains some of the heaviest guitar moments from the band to dat

Sophie Berkal-Sarbit

Young & Foolish

Young & Foolish is comprised of twelve tracks, which include “I’m Gonna Live ‘Til I Die” by Hoffman/Kent/Curtis.

MySpace.com/sophieberkalsarbit

Susan Boyle: Dreams Really Do Come True – Just Have Faith & Believe

I Dream a Dream

By Natasha Slinko

It is said that dreams do come true, and on January 21st 2009, Scottish-born Susan Boyle took one extraordinary leap of faith to achieve her dream by stepping completely out of her comfort zone, auditioning for Britain’s Got Talent to follow her one true passion – singing.

'I Dreamed A Dream’, a song made famous by the Andrew Lloyd Weber musical Les Misérables, was Boyle’s song of choice.

Boyle stepped onto the stage, only to be ridiculed by the judges and the audience alike, as they assumed and promptly judged a book by its cover, disvaluing anything else that was present, such as the human heart and the human spirit. How brave and resilient she was in the light of their scorn.

Then history was made as Boyle began to sing “I dream a dream in time gone by, when hope was high, and life worth living. I dreamed that love would never die, I dreamed that God would be forgiving…” You could have heard a pin drop.

The Dave Young Quartet

Dave Young

Reviewed by Bill McDonald
Cashbox Canada Jazz Writer
11/09

With every concert and every recording, whether as a band leader or sideman, Dave Young reminds us why he is one of Canada’s premier bassists and jazz musicians. His latest CD, Mean What You Say, is no exception. Along with Kevin Turcotte (trumpet), Robi Botos (piano), and Frank Botos (drums), he performs a variety of songs from well known jazz composers, as well as three of his own.

There are many soloing highlights from all of the performers. On ‘Will You Still Be Mine’, Young shows his mastery of the bow in his own solo. There is the uncommon trumpet and bass duet by Turcotte and Young on Celia. As usual, any solo Robbi Botos touches turns to gold, although his work on ‘Seven Minds’ is a personal favourite. Brother Frank Botos lays down driving rhythms throughout.

Canadian jazz is alive and well.

CDbaby.com

Oliver Jones and Hank Jones

Oliver and Hank Jones

Reviewed by Bill McDonald
Cashbox Canada Jazz Writer
11/09

Two jazz titans on two grand pianos, and one great CD. Long time friends Oliver Jones and Hank Jones had previously played together in concerts. It is wonderful to capture their combined virtuosity in a studio recording.

On the first three tracks – What Am I Here For, Groove Merchant, and Ripples – they are backed by two young talents Brandi Disterheft on bass and Jim Doxas on drums. Two other tracks – Monk’s Mood and Lonely Women feature Hank Jones solo. The remaining tracks are Oliver Jones and Hank Jones duets, which reflect, quite simply, two timeless jazz masters.

Within the duet tracks is a clear tribute to their mutual friend, the late Oscar Peterson with two of his well known compositions, Blues For Big Scotia and Cakewalk. As well, there is Oliver Jones own tribute, I Remember OP.

Thank you, Oliver. Thank you, Hank. Somewhere Oscar is smiling.

Ian Tyson Yellowhead to Yellowstone and Other Love Stories

Ian Tyson

By Don Graham

I have been listening to Ian Tyson since the mid sixties. The steel guitar player in my band, Graham County, the late Ron Dann, played with him in the seventies. He had one of those instantly recognizable voices; a pure, rich tenor that wrapped itself around his well crafted, descriptive lyrics. Songs like Four Strong Winds, Someday Soon, Summer Wages and The Navajo Rug all showcased his vocal ability.

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