Artist: Joseph Patrick Moore
CD: Drum & Bass Society Volume 1
Quote: “Moore is a creative, mellow, almost trippy songwriter, weaving mysterious sounds and pure funk into this traditionally sophisticated genre.”
By Jennifer Layton
I’ve actually learned to enjoy the artsy, avant-garde feel of a group of jazz musicians getting together and letting the music flow, which is the vibe of this CD. I saw myself in a large art studio with paint-splattered hardwood floors and sheet music scattered on tables. The musicians just came in and started playing together, opening the windows to let the night air mix with the strings, woodwinds, and percussion.
Although Moore and Crew work in several covers, most of these songs are originals. Moore is a creative, mellow, almost trippy songwriter, weaving mysterious sounds and pure funk into this traditionally sophisticated genre. I enjoyed wandering around the swirling, incense-scented, groove-heavy funk of “Jamband Express” and the tribal, rhythmic echo of “Rain Dance.” Mental barriers melt. Time dissolves. I like hanging out with these artists and just listening to them celebrate sound.
The only problem I have is when they start doing covers. I liked two of the originals too much to see their rough edges softened into jazz/world music. Moore has turned Men At Work’s “Down Under” into a woodsy, new age, flowy sound, which doesn’t seem to match lyrics about odd characters and drunken barfing. And The Fixx’s original version of “One Thing Leads To Another” had a perfectly jagged guitar riff that matched Cy Curnin’s sharp, aggressive vocal. These two songs do not lend themselves to jazz.
Having said that, I just noticed in the liner notes that one of the musicians on the “Down Under” remake is playing a pizza box with brushes. I think Colin Hay would get a kick out of that.