Liquid Soul

Our rating 
3.0 out of 5 star rating 3.0

COMPOSERS: Liquid Soul
LABELS: Telarc
ALBUM TITLE: Liquid Soul
WORKS: Liquid Soul
PERFORMER: Mars Williams (saxes, woodwinds, keyboards); Doug Corcoran, Hugh Ragin (trumpet); Andy Baker (trombone); Chris Cameron (keyboards); Tommy Klein (guitar); Phil Ajjarapu (bass); Tony Taylor (drums); David Arredondo, Brian Quarles (vocals); DJ Logic (turntab
Mars Williams is a veteran of Chicago’s new-music scene and this is his entertaining stab at a creative crossover project. Thick with electronics, beat-boxes and keyboards, the music is a dense amalgam of hip-hop, old-fashioned jazz-rock, fragments of free playing, smoochy organ-combo licks, James Brown funk, world-music reverberations and anything else that Williams thinks might work, leading to the apocalyptic finale of ‘Kong’, a blow-out that diehard Motorhead fans would approve of. Sounds like an unholy mess – and in some ways it is, but Van Christie’s lo-fi soundmix imposes an oddly effective focus on everything that comes out of the speakers. ‘Peanut Head’ is a quite irresistible horn chant and none of the vocalists get in the way for long. Against all odds, a jazz feel does survive. Richard Cook