"FREE FOREVER" is an absolutely stunning double DVD on the British blues-rock band that reinvented the Rolling Stones' number one hit from 1969, "Honky Tonk Women," for their Top Five ticket to fame, "All Right Now," coming a year after the Stones classic. That half of this group, singer Paul Rodgers and drummer Simon Kirke, would form Bad Company and crank out hit after hit, chart action beginning in 1974, makes this compelling collection all the more valuable. There's so much great material on the two discs that one can spend hours exploring the restored archival footage, the new interviews, and perhaps the frosting on the cake – multiple camera images from the Isle of Wight festival performance. …
Best known for expanding the possibilities of the musette an early 20th century French ballroom dance to incorporate contemporary attitudes and the postmodern improv of more traditional jazz, the accordionist Richard Galliano ultimately posed a triple threat in the music world, establishing himself with like force as a composer and arranger. With time, Galliano a protégé of Astor Piazzolla worked elements of Piazzolla's tango nueve into his style.
Gato Barbieri may be one of those saxophonists whose sound is so closely associated with smooth jazz – and has been since the late '70s – that it's hard to imagine he was once the progenitor of a singular kind of jazz fusion: and that's world fusion, not jazz-rock fusion. Barbieri recorded four albums for Impulse! between 1973 and 1975 that should have changed jazz forever, in that he provided an entirely new direction when it was desperately needed. That it didn't catch certainly isn't his fault, but spoke more to the dearth of new ideas that followed after the discoveries of John Coltrane, Ornette Coleman, and Miles Davis. Barbieri, a Coltrane disciple, hailed from Argentina and sought to bring the music of Latin America, most specifically its folk forms, into the jazz arena.
Beethoven's String Quartets are well known for their inventiveness. The mold of the string quartet form, established by Haydn, was shattered by Beethoven's profound expression and expansion of the "rules." Between 1999 and 2003, the renowned Pražák Quartet recorded all of the Beethoven string quartets, and this match of program and performers is one made in heaven.
The sound of Wicked Minds is heavy and dynamic with obvious hints from Uriah Heep along Deep Purple, Atomic Rooster and High Tide. But Wicked Minds is more than just a derivative, they are good and experienced musicians who can write good and elaborate compositions, from dreamy and mellow with warm vocals, flute and acoustic guitar to harder-edged and bombastic with fiery, often biting and wah-wah drenched guitar and floods of Hammond organ. Also interesting is the pleasant integration of vintage keyboards like the Solina string-ensemble, Fender Rhodes piano, Minimoog synthesizer and even Mellotron. This adds an extra dimension to their sound and makes it worth listening for not only the hardrock and metal fans.