How ironic that after years fronting the hugely influential but desperately overlooked Hüsker Dü, Bob Mould's first project with new band Sugar, 1992's Copper Blue, would become the most commercially successful project of his career. Of course, it was released just as the seeds sown by his former band were bearing bountiful fruits in the post-Nirvana alternative nation, which provided ample explanation for its phenomenal success.
Sugar's Beaster is actually outtakes from their previous dynamite album, Copper Blue. It comes off as some kind of deranged, ugly sister of that sparking album, a yin to Copper's yang, a violent, angry, and seething wall of aggression with (this time) little concession to Bob Mould's pop prowess.
Arriving after years of sonic bombast in Hüsker Dü, the reflective, acoustic nature of Bob Mould's first solo album, Workbook, was a bold statement of renewal. Like all of Mould's work, it's an intensely introspective record, finding him purging demons left over from the dissolution of Hüsker Dü. Instead of relying on raging guitars, Mould explores a wide variety of styles, from pure pop ("See a Little Light") to reflective folk laced with cellos. It's an astonishing array of styles, and the songs are among Mould's finest.
Eric Truffaz has covered a lot of ground - both literally and metaphorically - since releasing his first album on the Blue Note label in 1996. Recorded in several locations but cut to sound like a single concert, Face-a-Face reveals the success of this artist who, with consistency and determination, has travelled a long road to success that has been filled with detours, long stretches in the fast lane and occasional pit stops, but which has never veered away from the source of his originality and the happiness of his waking dream. For Truffaz, each concert is a chance to meet his public "face à face". And it's this exchange between musicians and their audiences - the source of his inspiration - that Truffaz has set out…
Laurent Marode est un pianiste français dans le métier depuis plus de quinze ans. Il multiplie les projets mais avec ce nouvel album en nonet, ce sont ses talents d’arrangeur qu’il a voulu mettre en avant. Le disque alterne ses compositions avec des reprises. Cinq soufflants (cuivres et anches), un vibraphone, basse et batterie accompagnent le piano du leader. Du jazz à l’ancienne, du jazz de grand hôtel qui swingue allégrement. Même sans les voir, on entend chaque soliste se lever de derrière son pupitre pour y aller de son petit chorus pendant que les autres assurent la pulsation. Son arrangement de Penny Lane est un bel exemple de son travail. Partant des idées de George Martin qu’il “jazzifie”, il confie la mélodie de McCartney aux cuivres puis au vibraphone et enfin au saxos. Superbe. La grande classe.