Thursday, February 26, 2009

Casual Listening -- Laura Barrett, Shemekia Copeland, War Child: Heroes

Casual Listening

a review of cool new music

by Jeff Pinzino

February 27, 2009

* Laura Barrett – Victory Garden (other)

Adventurous songs for voice, chamber orchestra, and African thumb piano. I could see contemplating this with a bottle of white wine on a summer evening at Ravinia or Tanglewood. Barrett’s lyrics and arrangements have an avant-garde sensibility, while the melodies are beyond haunting.

Listen to Laura Barrett “Wood Between Worlds

* Shemekia Copeland – Never Going Back (blues)

Classic rhythm and blues from one of the best singers of the new generation. Copeland commands many styles, and on this album sounds great on soul, gospel, Delta, and Chicago blues.

Listen to Shemekia Copeland on myspace here with “Never Goin’ Back to Memphis

* War Child Presents Heroes (rock)

Fifteen rock gods. Fifteen of their greatest songs. Fifteen bands anointed by the songwriters to do new versions of those songs. Pretending to render any sort of objective judgment on this collection is futile. Just enjoy being the kid in the candy store with this one, and feel even better knowing that your dime gets donated to an organization that rescues child soldiers.

Listen to Beck covering Bob Dylan’s “Leopard-Skin Pill-Box Hat

Listen to the Yeah Yeah Yeahs covering The Ramones’ “Sheena is a Punk Rocker

Listen to Estelle covering Stevie Wonder’s “Superstition

K’Naan – Troubador (rap)

Anyone looking for proof of the global scope of rap music should consider K’Naan exhibit A. Raised in Somalia and relocated to Canada, K’Naan testifies to the redeeming power of hip hop on streets far more dangerous than urban America. With a hopeful vibe and a powerfully spoken message, K’Naan digs this music deeper than all but the most skilled American rappers.

Listen to K’Naan “Dreamer

Uri Gurvich – The Storyteller (jazz)

A series of jazz extrapolations of Jewish themes. Gurvich’s tenor saxophone quartet draws inspiration from John Coltrane, bringing a similar sound and spiritual centeredness to sounds rooted in another ancient tradition.

Listen to Uri Gurvich “Ha’bonim

Also worth a listen this week: Lamb of God “Wrath,” The Bran Flakes “I Have Hands”

* highly recommended

! highest recommendation

Check out the blog at . To subscribe or unsubscribe, or just to say hi, send an e-mail to

1 comment:

Bugga Drenth said...

Unique Hoodia Walmart Donde Se Planta El Noni. The fly by night companies will not sell hoodia products anymore because they can be easily spotted if. By arming yourself with this knowledge, you can learn how to get the most from your use of it.