For the second ECM album by Aaron Parks – following the solo release Aborescence, which JazzTimes praised as “expansive, impressionistic… like a vision quest” – the prize-winning pianist has convened a trio featuring bassist Ben Street and drummer Billy Hart. The rhythm pair, which also teams in Hart’s hit quartet for ECM, blends fluidity and strength – what Parks calls “an oceanic” quality, producing waves of energy for the pianist to alternately ride and dive into. Find the Way has the aura of a piano-trio recording in the classic mold, from melody-rich opener “Adrift” to the closing title track, a cover of a romantic tune Parks grew to love on an LP by Rosemary Clooney and Nelson Riddle. Parks also drew inspiration for this album from the likes of Alice Coltrane and Shirley Horn (for whom Hart played); space and subtlety are a priority.
That's the Way I Like It: The Best of Dead or Alive collects 18 tracks from the androgynous British dance-pop outfit responsible for one of the '80’s most enduring club hits, “You Spin Me Round (Like A Record)”. Other highlights include a cover of KC & the Sunshine Band's disco classic "That's the Way (I Like It)," “Lover Come Back to Me," "In Too Deep," "My Heart Goes Bang,” and 1986's "Brand New Lover,” as well as the four extended/alternate mixes that populate the collections’ second half. Remastered from the original studio tapes, the anthology may not be exhaustive, but it’s solid enough for casual fans, and engaging enough to recommend to listeners with the false notion that Dead or Alive was a mere one-hit wonder.
This 2 CD Legacy Edition of features an expanded version of the original RCA album. Added is four single sides from the period and a selection of "fly-on-the-wall" outtakes from the sessions that produced the majority of tracks for the LP. Disc 2 features a previously unreleased concert from ' 1970 recorded on August 12. The 24-page booklet features an insightful essay, photos and memorabilia. This new 2-CD Legacy Edition of the album that accompanied the film directed by celebrates this memorable era in the career of with an expanded version of the original Gold-certified RCA release.
Billy Preston’s debut album for Apple Records was his vocal album debut too. Before this Billy was renowned merely as a wizard instrumentalist. Here, his impassioned vocals help create one of the best soul records of the 1960s. Produced by George Harrison, That’s The Way… expands Billy’s palette of gospel and R&B to embrace rock elements brought in by A-list players Keith Richards, Ginger Baker and Eric Clapton.
The bilingual multi-instrumentalist (guitar/piano) and vocalist will likely be lumped with fellow Canadian blues women such as Sue Foley (who was instrumental in bringing her to Ruf's attention), but on the basis of this sophomore release, that's misleading. Rather, the Ottawa raised musician infuses blues into a variety of singer/songwriter styles. The Way It Feels, which was released in Canada almost a year before it came out in the States, revels in different musical set pieces that display Roxanne Potvin's sultry voice and eclectic stylings. The guest roster of Daniel Lanois, John Hiatt, Bruce Cockburn and Memphis Horns veteran Wayne Jackson indicates that Potvin is comfortable in styles besides the blues and R&B that characterize, but doesn't monopolize, this album. Terrific, even revelatory covers of Joe Tex's "I Want To (Do Everything for You)" and Freddie King's "Your Love Keeps Working on Me" find Potvin immersed in the soul aspects of the blues, and her own compositions that dominate this set occasionally follow suit. The lovely solo piano ballad "Don't Pay Attention" is clearly aimed at the Norah Jones crowd, as is the waltz time, French-sung "La Merveille".