Letters

Letters 03-02-2015

American Exceptualism Rudy Giuliani was espousing his opinion to Fox News that Barack Obama did not love America and didn’t brag enough about “American Exceptionalism.”

Fur Is Not Chic When my 25-pound dog stepped in a toothed steel leg hold trap a few ft off the trail, I learned how “unchic” fur is. I had to carry her out two miles to get to a vet.

Which Is More Dangerous? Just a couple of thoughts I had in response to the letters by Gordon Lee Dean and Jarin Weber in the Feb. 23 issue. Mr. Dean claims that there have been zero deaths from the measles in the past ten years.

Real Action on Climate In “Climate Madness” in the Feb. 9 issue, the writer points out that scientists are all but unanimous and that large numbers of people agree: global warming poses a threat to future generations.

Real Science Wolfgang Pauli, the Nobel Prize winning Austrian-born theoretical physicist, was known not only for his work in postulating the existence of the neutrino but feared for his razor-edged humor.

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4Play

Ross Boissoneau - March 24th, 2005
Nils Landgren Funk Unit – Funky ABBA (Justin Time Records)

And they said it couldn’t be done. Actually, ABBA’s popularity peaked right about at the height of the disco craze. But funked-up versions of “Thank You For The Music” and “Dancing Queen” just don’t seem right somehow. That is, until you listen to trombonist Landgren and his cohorts, including horns, a rapper, even ABBA’s own Benny Andersson on the concluding “When All Is Said and Done.” The trip-hopped versions of familiar ABBA tunes show a side of the sugary-sweet pop group that lends itself to a driving beat and bass-heavy treatments. Highlights include a soulful “Voulez-Vous” and a rocking “Summer Night City,” but every cut reinvents the Swedish superstars, often slowing down the beat and separating out the unison vocals.

Bill Wyman’s Rhythm Kings – Just For A Thrill (Fuel 2000)

One of the only surviving ex-Rolling Stones, Wyman has been out of the spotlight since leaving the legendary band in 1993. His Rhythm Kings is a collective of old pals and new friends who enjoy the old-time blues and R that first brought his former band together. This is the group’s fourth disc, and like the others it’s an enjoyable program as long as you’re not taking things too seriously. Loose and amiable describes the atmosphere. Among the pals on hand for these sessions are Martin Taylor, Andy Fairweather-Low and Mark Knopfler. The vocalists – Albert Lee, Bevery Skeete, Fame, and Wyman, among others – are properly laid-back and greasy. It’s no “Satisfaction,” but fans of Jools Holland, Louis Jordan, or early rock and roll will enjoy the proceedings.

John Pizzarelli – Knowing You (Telarc)

Guitarist and singer Pizzarelli takes on such varied American songwriting masters as Johnny Mandel, David Frishberg, Sammy Cahn, and Brian Wilson. “Coffee, Black” from the Broadway musical “Big” is a caffeine-fueled romp that drops quotes from the old Maxwell House commercials into the mix. Other highlights include “Ain’t That A Kick In The Head?” which sounds like a set-closer as the patrons have one more for the road. “The Shadow Of Your Smile” has a similar late-night vibe, though this time more like it’s being played to a nearly-empty lounge. Pizzarelli follows that formula throughout the album, mixing up-tempo and more laid-back numbers. Pizzarelli’s playing and his vocal phrasing are so clear and casual that it’s easy to overlook their brilliance.

Thievery Corporation – The Cosmic Game (ESL Music)

This is not your father’s electronic music. Unlike, say, Klaus Schulze’s excursions on the space machine, Thievery Corporation explores a lot of territory in its trippy blend of beats, acoustic guitars, and various world musics. This is closer to easy listening than to the sonic excursions of Tangerine Dream. Lounge music morphs into world music so effortlessly you hardly notice. The Washington D.C. DJ duo of Rob Garza and Eric Hilton continues to produce music that is at once interesting and unknowable. Winding its way from the dance clubs to the blissed-out listening rooms across the country, “The Cosmic Game” includes such exotic instruments as sitar, berimbau and tabla alongside real and synthetic horns and sound effects in its 16 tracks.



 
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