Monday, 10 March 2014

Review: Get The Blessing - OC DC

Get The Blessing’s third album of course takes its name, not as some may think from a skewering of AC/DC, but from the initials of their much admired Ornette Coleman’s front line duo – Ornette Coleman and Don Cherry. And again the Bristol based quartet maintains their hard to label sound while still making it all a deliciously groove heavy recording.

The album kicks off in blistering style with the title tracks big funk-rock bass and drums rhythm, whilst the trumpet and sax, when it comes in, almost plays underneath the track instead of playing upfront. A fantastic opener, the second number ‘Americano Meccano’ by comparison is much quieter but no less impressive. Featuring a quirky guest appearance by the legendary Robert Wyatt, the piece is a melodically rich drone, but surprisingly enhanced by Wyatt’s wordless yet musical near murmuring. It’s a guest appearance that both works brilliantly, but also isn’t one that when performed live would lose something for his lack of presence.

‘Adagio In Wot Minor’ too benefits from Adrian Utley’s guest appearance on guitar effects that entwine with the two horns to form a satisfying tension, and although Pete Judge’s trumpet and Jake McMurchie’s sax are the obvious lead instruments, frequently they form a backing harmony while Jim Barr’s nimble bass work leads. Barr’s bass is a truly under-exposed musical weapon on anything he touchs; a killer groove from him is the fuel that ignites ‘Between Fear And Sex’, a wonderfully moody piece, while his insistent playing on ‘The Waiting’ creates a strong and hypnotically driving effect. The final number here too, ‘Pentopia’, is an atmospherically cinematic track that benefits from some subtle backing electronics that enhance rather than dominate. A beautiful piece it could quite happily go on forever.

‘OC DC’ is perhaps Get The Blessing’s best album so far. While Judge and McMurchie are obviously stellar musicians, and their interplay is brilliant, the real development is in bass man Barr’s presence and drummer Clive Deamer’s tight and funky perfect drumming that possesses plenty of rock bite but also features enough jazz variety and playfulness. And the foursomes interaction has in turn created one very tight unit, that when blended with the sparsely used electronics utilised here, form a uniquely sounding group with almost a genre all to themselves.

Full of bass grooves and rhythms, hard drums with plenty of snap, a two-man horn harmony and lead section, plenty of strong melodies, and every track paced to perfection, this is a great album that not only shows a growing band, but also is just a fantastic musical statement - one of the best albums of 2012.


No comments:

Post a Comment