The Microscopic Septet is one of those rare groups that have been able to take a unique and enduring approach to various forms of popular music, be it jazz, blues, R & B, rock, pop, and so on, by balancing respect with irreverence, namely such outfits as Frank Zappa's Mothers of Invention, the New Rhythm and Blues Quintet (NRBQ), the Sun Ra Arkestra, the Jazz Passengers, the Vienna Art Orchestra, and Mostly Other People Do the Killing.
Joe Bonamassa is a young guitar virtuoso, in line with the likes of Derek Trucks and John Mayer (like Jonny Lang and Kenny Wayne Shepherd before them) to be the Next Blues-Rock Guitar Hero. So, It's Like That, his sophomore solo effort, includes production by Clif Magness, and his band includes drummer Kenny Kramme and bassist Eric Czar. Bonamassa shines when he is allowed to stretch out and explore, on songs such as the sonically varied "Pain and Sorrow." There, on a long improvisation, he works through myriad modes of playing, textures, and musical ideas.