Review: Josh Roseman – New Constellations (Live In Vienna)

Josh Roseman’s latest recording is horn-driven, funked out, spacey reggae with a dose of dub tossed in for good measure. Roseman’s trombone, whether it’s straight and buttery, muted, electrified, or chorused is front and center on all the tunes. Like his two earlier recordings, Cherry and the very excellent Treats For The Nightwalker, New Constellations is an ensemble recording, with many excellent musicians contributing to Roseman’s arrangements. Three particular musicians of note who help out on this one are Barney McCall (keys) and Jonathon Maron (bass), both of who are former bandmates of Roseman’s in Groove Collective, and young trumpeter extraordinaire, Ambrose Akinmusire (see Alan Pasqua’s latest release). Three tunes of note are “Theme Constellations,” “Thoroughfare,” which is my favorite song of this session, and “I Should Have Known Better,” which has this Pharoah Sanders The Creator Has A Master Plan feel to it. Josh Roseman is a member of a new group of young musicians who are not afraid to cross boundaries, and color outside the lines – while creating their brand of improvisational jazz. I applaud him.

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Review: Supercharged from Down to the Bone

Supercharged by Down to the BoneDown to the Bone has the perfect summer soundtrack with their fun and funky new release Supercharged. True to the title, this release is a pumped-up, constant jam that won’t let your body remain idle. It needs a warning label – “Product contains powerful horns (props to Shilts and the D.C. Horns), percolating bass, mean guitar by Tony Remy, and relentless energy – may leave you exhausted after play!”

Supercharged sounds like it should be listened to in the sunshine, preferably driving down the highway with the top down. It conjures up summer imagery, especially on two of my favorite tracks. “Parkside Shuffle” is a nice, sweet tune, reminiscent of a walk in the park, that builds into an unbelievably infectious melody around the two-minute mark. Hil St. Soul adds a strong vocal effort to the uplifting “Smile to Shine.” A flavorful bass line and welcome trumpet and trombone solos at the end only make a great song better.

Maybe I’m not looking hard enough, but it’s rare to hear this kind of music released and receiving mass distribution in the States. Buy this release when it comes out on June 18. Not only will you get music you’ll enjoy all season/year long but maybe enough copies will sell to justify more funky soulful jazz recordings.