Michael Franks' first album of the '90s and his first in three years was a complete return to form and his best album since 1979's Tiger in the Rain. Meditative, lush and clearly the work of an artist intent on making personal music regardless of trends or airplay, Blue Pacific is as open and beautiful as the ocean for which it is named. The return of the production team of Tommy LiPuma and Al Schmitt doesn't hurt either, and with such veteran pros as Dean Parks, John Guerin, John Patitucci and Peter Erskine on board, how could Franks miss? With additional production and engineering support by Walter Becker and Roger Nichols, the Steely Dan connection, previously hinted at, was finally made, with great results. It's pointless to single out individual songs, since this is very much a complete, unified work. The album marked a total rebirth for Franks.
A decade after they delivered Okie Dokie It's the Orb on Kompakt on…Kompakt, Alex Paterson and Thomas Fehlmann return to the stalwart Cologne label with an album bearing a less sportive title and it sounds like serious sci-fi business. The standard edition consists of four tracks, each one between nine and 15 minutes in length. Not one of them is humorously titled "Captain Korma" or "Komplikation," unless "God's Mirrorball" triggers a recollection of the first Tad album. Unlike Okie Dokie, this is all new, not an amalgamation of tweaked, previously released tracks and new material. Lest this be seen as the Orb's "most mature work to date," within seconds of the opener, a mild-mannered voice from a colorful documentary about Sumerian gods intones, "If you believe in evil, then you probably need a whack on the back of the neck with a big fucking stick." After four-and-a-half minutes of ambience that intensifies in gradual fashion, a fluid, sturdy beat and light chime-like accents enter to set the tone for the remainder of the 50-minute program.
Kind of Blue isn't merely an artistic highlight for Miles Davis, it's an album that towers above its peers, a record generally considered as the definitive jazz album, a universally acknowledged standard of excellence. Why does Kind of Blue possess such a mystique? Perhaps because this music never flaunts its genius. It lures listeners in with the slow, luxurious bassline and gentle piano chords of "So What." From that moment on, the record never really changes pace – each tune has a similar relaxed feel, as the music flows easily. Yet Kind of Blue is more than easy listening. It's the pinnacle of modal jazz – tonality and solos build from the overall key, not chord changes, giving the music a subtly shifting quality. All of this doesn't quite explain why seasoned jazz fans return to this record even after they've memorized every nuance. They return because this is an exceptional band – Miles, Coltrane, Bill Evans, Cannonball Adderley, Paul Chambers, Jimmy Cobb – one of the greatest in history, playing at the peak of its power.
After his well-documented health crisis, Chris decided that it was no longer creative or fun enough to release yet another single CD, finding it much better for both him & his new expanding audience to create something more special to enjoy… 'The Return Of The Fabulous Hofner Bluenotes' features the story of a late 50's guitar instrumental band "The Delmonts" that evolved into a 60's blues band "The Hofner Blue Notes". The Return of the Fabulous Hofner Bluenotes is the twenty-second studio album by Chris Rea, released in 2008. It comprises 3CDs and 2 x 10" Vinyl records in an 80 page hardback book. It is the second album of his project, the Hofner Blue Notes.