New CD Releases for 11-30-2012

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Title: Peter Ostroushko - The Mandolin Chronicles

Genre: Roots, Acoustic

Description: Although not exactly a household name, Peter Ostroushko's mandolin has been a part of A Prairie Home Companion since its inception. Hailed by Norman Blake (who's also no slouch on mandolin) as "one of the greatest mandolin players going today" this three-CD box set includes classical, Brazilian, Ukrainian, Scandinavian, Italian, and French music along with American roots compositions. Recording quality is excellent, capturing the subtle differences between Ostroushko's bowl-back, oval hole and f-hole mandolins.

Rating (0- 10): Overall - 9, Sonically - 9

 

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Title: Old Man Luedecke - Tender Is the Night

Genre: Roots, Americana, Folk

Description: Multiple Juno award-winner Old Man Luedeke may be better known in his native land of Canada than the US, but his latest, produced by Tim O'Brien, may help change that. Featuring a back-up band that includes Kenny Malone on percussion and Mike Bub on bass, this is easily Luedeke's most accessible and cohesive release yet. O'Brien's sympathetic production highlights Leudeke's delicate balance between pop and old-timey, his smooth vocals and rustic instrumental textures.

Rating (0- 10): Overall - 8, Sonically - 8

 

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Title: Le Vent Du Nord - Tromper Le Temps

Genre: Roots, Gallic,

Description: If I had to describe Le Vent Du Nord in one word, it would be rollicking. This four-piece band has been together for over ten years and during that time they've developed a unique style that couples "A special energy" with an intentional "crookedness" that gives their music its special edge. Their lyrics are in French, but don't let that put you off, just because their message is decidedly Francophile, because their music is universally infectious.

Rating (0- 10): Overall - 9, Sonically - 8

 

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Title: Louis Durra - Rocket Science

Genre: Jazz

Description: Pianist Louis Durra leads his trio through twelve tunes, including songs from Stevie Wonder, Lennon/McCartney, and Bob Marley. Jerry Kalaf plays drums and Larry Steen and Ryan McGillicuddy share bass duties. The overall tone of the album is warm and intimate with somewhat retro jazz feel that reminds me of middle period Oscar Peterson, full of pianistic flourishes and rich harmonic textures. The piano sound here is both vibrant and sonorous.

Rating (0- 10): Overall - 8, Sonically - 9

 

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Title: Fado - Em Si Bemol

Genre: Latin

Description: If you've never experienced Portuguese Fado music, this CD will serve as an excellent entre to this indigenous treat. Guitarists Miquel Silva and Paulo Goncalves are joined by vocalist Pedro Matos, acoustic bass Nuno Campos, and percussionist Manuel Santiesteban combine to create a cohesive and rhythmically potent ensemble who've accompanied Paquito Rivera, Maria Joao, and Hamilton Holland. On their third album this group proves that they rally don't need a "front man" to make exciting and vibrant music.

Rating (0- 10): Overall - 8, Sonically - 8

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