Straight-up fusion here. You’ve got to be in the mood, but presuming you are, this record rewards your thirst for mind-twisting syncopation, ridiculous unison lines, odd meters, and angular harmony. Etienne M’Bappe is absolutely burning, often favoring fretless and deftly tackling the music’s abundant challenges. There’s much to digest on To The One, but it’s time well spent. Pick a bar, and get to transcribing!
The Bird And The Bee: Interpreting The Masters Vol. 1: A Tribute To Daryl Hall and John Oates [Blue Note]
Of the many records that one accumulates over years of music appreciation a few have real staying power. Some turn into old, reliable friends—the kind you can turn to for a reliable dose of good feeling. The Bird and the Bee’s last record, Ray Guns Are Not The Future, is such a record for me. The Los Angeles duo’s smooth and tuneful earcandy- sweetened pop is seductive and deceptively smart. There new record, a completely reverent homage to the oft-mocked (unfairly) Hall & Oates, is no different. Much of the bass is synthesized, but it’s still killer, funky, and fun.