Carl Nielsen’s incidental music The Mother was written for a gala celebrating the reunification of Southern Jutland with Denmark. The score first appeared in print in 2007 and has never been recorded in its entirety. This recording places the music in the right context for the first time, therefore providing us with a new picture of Carl Nielsen as a composer for the theatre. Carl Nielsen uses familiar songs in the play, including the Danish national anthem as well as a curious use of the national anthems from the allied countries that, with their attacks on Germany, determined the fate of Southern Jutland.
Townes Van Zandt was a one-of-a-kind artist who blazed a new trail for singer/songwriters, conjuring a sound that combined elements of country and folk with his own artful melodic sensibility, matched with lyrics that were personal, poetic, and impressionistic while remaining firmly down to earth. A new breed of Texas singer/songwriters followed Van Zandt's example, and it's all but impossible to imagine artists like Guy Clark, Jimmie Dale Gilmore, or Steve Earle finding their voice without his guiding influence. This two-disc set features Van Zandt's first two albums, 1968's For the Sake of the Song and 1969's Our Mother the Mountain.
By 1993, major labels were tending to favor alternative rock over corporate metal. But at the dawn of the decade, majors were signing corporate headbangers left and right. And at Arista, one commercial metal/hard rock band that enjoyed a big promotional push in 1990 was Every Mother's Nightmare…
Boundary-pushing pianist Jason Moran expands his sound yet again with a blend of modern electric and acoustic blues on Same Mother. Featuring longtime bassist Tarus Mateen and drummer Nasheet Waits, Moran's seventh album also includes guitarist Marvin Sewell. An equally adventurous musician, Sewell adds a modern blues sound to Moran's usual mélange of post-bop, classical, New Orleans jazz, and funk. The results are raw, inspired, and frankly not wholly pleasing as Sewell's crisp acoustic attack does not always blend well with Moran's equally naked piano chops.
Italian composer and musician Marco Ragni has been a presence in the Italian music scene for a quarter of a century or thereabouts, and following a couple of decades in various band constellations he decided to venture out as a solo artist a few years back, launching his first solo album back in 2010. "Mother from the Sun" is his fourth studio recording, released towards the end of 2014. To give you an idea, think of the Pink Floyd albums A Saucerful of Secrets, More, Ummagumma, Atom Heart Mother (side two), Meddle, and Obscured By Clouds as major inspirations. Add to this the late sixties California hippy scene and the fact that Marco is Italian, and you have three strong foundations for a unique blend of psychedelic music with folk and funk and classic prog.
The bass is really up front on this one. This is the most fully formed Mick Karn album, but still something seems to be missing. Or it's really that there should be more missing. Sometimes all the instrumentation gets a bit to busy. I could do without a lot of the guitar for instance. Although nothing here can obscure some of the greatest bass lines Karn's come up with. Songs like "Plaster the Magic Tongue" and a few others will amaze the bass crazed. There's lots of middle eastern and jazz fusion sounds to be found here. It's similar to Bestial Cluster just more consistently good, and sometimes darker or more middle eastern sounding. Mick Karn's best up to this point.
It's a Mother is everything its title promises–the individual songs seem like extended passages in one infinite, diamond-hard groove. The organic evolution and spontaneity of the performances suggests they were improvised in the studio, with James Brown barking orders and directing traffic more than he sings, at least in any conventional sense; the band follows his directions with the blind faith and respect of soldiers following a veteran general into battle, time and again summoning even greater intensity to ratchet the music to another level. Not quite yet funk, It's a Mother is nevertheless beyond soul music altogether–another brand new bag to bide the time until the next one comes along.
Appearing after the sprawling, unfocused double-album set Ummagumma, Atom Heart Mother may boast more focus, even a concept, yet that doesn't mean it's more accessible. If anything, this is the most impenetrable album Pink Floyd released while on Harvest, which also makes it one of the most interesting of the era…