Mister Barrington: II [misterbarrington.com]

With just their second release, Mister Barrington (keyboardist/ vocalist Oli Rockberger, drummer Zach Danziger, and bassist Owen Biddle) has pulled ahead of the pack when it comes to the myriad musicians merging man and machine.

With just their second release, Mister Barrington (keyboardist/ vocalist Oli Rockberger, drummer Zach Danziger, and bassist Owen Biddle) has pulled ahead of the pack when it comes to the myriad musicians merging man and machine. That’s because each member is a first-call player fluent in improvisation and feel across numerous styles, each has a producer’s ear for sonics and song construction, and all three have the gift for musically melding the human and the electronic pulse.

The disc opening quasi-shuffle, “Only a Fool,” in which Biddle’s bass is seamlessly composited with synth bass; the new jack-nodding “See Your Face” (with Biddle stomping his Electro-Harmonix Bass Micro Synth pedal); and the old school “I Remember You” all summon Barrington’s signature song sound: Rockberger’s vocoder vocals delivering knockout hooks over the bionic brilliance below. Similarly, on the instrumental side, transcending throwback is the magic formula, as with the slap bass-led “PRG” (a play on the ’80s contempo jazz label, GRP) and “Frank’s Drebin,” which recalls early-’70s Billy Cobham, thanks to Danziger’s dazzling drum work. The experimentalism reaches an extreme on “Helter’s Kelter,” where Biddle’s ten tracks of bass ideas are pruned to perfectly-panned peak-outs; the oozy “Landing,” with Owen unleashing free-flowing fills in his trademark R&B/Roots style; and the deep, 6-string throb of “Rawzz.” Who knew futurism could groove so hard?


CD Review: Mister Barringto "Can't Turn Back"

Firmly affixed to the leading edge of musician-played, programmed, and spontaneously triggered electronica, Mister Barrington (keyboardist Oli Rockberger, drummer Zach Danziger, and bassist Owen Biddle) further flashes its range on album number three.

Lorenzo Feliciati, Frequent Flyer [Rare Noise]

On his second studio effort, Roman bassist Lorenzo Feliciati once again shows his mastery of sound-mural creation via loops, effects, and such like-minded exploratory musicians as drummer Pat Mastelotto, keyboardist Roy Powell, and horn guests Bob Mintzer and Cuong Vu.

CPT. Kirk, Starship Cadillac [www.rufasbass.com]

Ex-Tribal Tech drummer Kirk Covington’s torrid trio debut finds bassist Rufus Philpot and keyboardist Scott Tibbs more than capable of going tribal (“Sleek,” “Neverworld”), while adding their own dimension (Tibbs writing and acoustic piano presence, and Philpot’s versatile, fertile fingers).

Animation, Asiento [RareNoiseRecords]

Trumpeter Tim Hagans and saxophonist/reissue producer Bob Belden revisit the music of Miles Davis’s Bitches Brew in this live 2006 concert, with the potent backing of Matt Garrison, keyboardist Scott Kinsey, drummer Guy Licata, and DJ Logic.

CD Review: Herb Alpert "Steppin' Out"

The music mogul/trumpeter’s longtime gift for casting great compositions in the latest light has taken on an added dimension over his last three CDs, with the inclusion of his terrific touring band, which features keyboardist Bill Cantos, drummer Michael Shapiro, and bass force Hussain Jiffry.

Review: John Scofield "Uberjam Deux"

Eleven years after his groundbreaking Überjam CD (with Jesse Murphy on bass), guitar force Scofield re-partners with most of the original band—rhythm guitar and sampling ace Avi Bortnick, drummer Adam Dietch, and keyboardist John Medeski—while introducing a new rhythm-section partner (Marcus Miller drummer Louis Cato) for Scofield vet and ex-Gov’t Mule bassist Andy Hess.

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Tedeschi Trucks Band, Revelator [Sony Masterworks]

Leaning on their best rhythm section to date—Oteil Burbridge and Austin drummer J.J. Johnson—and a horn-infused 11-piece ensemble, Allman Brothers guitar great Derek Trucks and his wife, vocalist supreme Susan Tedeschi have crafted a Grammy-worthy collection of earthy, heartfelt, hook-laden tunes.

Terri Lyne Carrington: More to Say...Real Life Story [E1 Entertainment]

Talented Terri Lyne Carrington is equally at home as a straight-ahead or groove drummer, and while her latest leans to the smoother side, she exhibits plenty of musical depth, as do the cadre of top bassists on hand. “Sherwood Forest” co-bills George Duke and Christian McBride’s electric bass (with Richard Patterson down below); “Ready” Freddie Washington grounds four cuts, most notably the Terri Lyne/Les McCann-sung soul ballad, “Hold Me Again.” Jimmy Haslip adds sophisticated support to the brass-driven “Papasan” and a radically-reharmonized “Let It Be,” and Matt Garrison reigns free on “No Not One (for Helen).”