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Record Roundup

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IV

Innovative Leisure

They’re from Toronto, a quartet of keyboard, bass, drums and sax. Past collaborations have been with Tyler the Creator and Ghostface Killah. Their fourth release, IV, while reinforcing Canadian stereotypes about snappy titles, belies the goofiness of its Animal House cover photo. They might look like they want to give you a wedgie, but there’s maturity and solid musicianship at work herein. The 11 tracks are laced with humor, irony, hip-hop vocals, and both dance (and trance) grooves. I played some for my five-year-old daughter, a dance student. She got furious when I turned it off. Another fan is born.

– Bruce Collier

Jeff Beck

Loud Hailer

Rhino

At age 72, Beck releases a hard-edged blues record with a punky female vocalist, and it rocks. It’s bombastic, fun and political, with the confidence and moxie Beck can deliver in ample heaps. Whether you’re a longtime fan or just like energetic rock tunes, Loud Hailer is welcome ear candy.

– Nikki Hedrick

The Vince Berman Trio

A Fenced in Area

Independent

This fun, experimental Panama City group will appeal to fans of trop rock and adult contemporary. It’s grownup music with a sense of humor, with songs about life’s problems (naming a newborn) and more common inspirations (relationships in turmoil). It’s a spirited debut album from some top-notch locals.

– Nikki Hedrick

Dave Douglas

Dark Territory

Greenleaf

Trumpeter Douglas continues to expand, acquiring more boldness and reach as he goes. His early stuff often struck me as intentionally non-traditional, even scattershot. His technique has always been world-class, it just seemed like he was hesitant to use it. Dark Territory has elements of late-stage Miles Davis (when he started imbibing all that Prince of Darkness hype). Douglas sails boldly here over the grooves and the clanky funk, like he’s on some sort of tour through a haunted mansion. It gets in your blood, though. He’s joined by bassist Jonathan Maron, drummer Mark Guiliana, and Shigeto on electronics.

– Bruce Collier

Luckily I’m the Hunter

Novageist

Independent

Pensacola instrumental post-rock band knows how to create complex grooves that deserve an undivided listen. Each song is best represented as a dance, with a perfect flow that creates continuous movement building to reveal a theatrical climax worthy of a standing ovation.

– Nikki Hedrick

Too Many Humans

Who’s in Charge Here?

Independent

They once called the beach home and played stages across the area. But just because they moved hundreds of miles away, it doesn’t mean we can’t still claim them for our own. This is the soaring debut album fans have long been waiting for—artful rock and an addicting listen. Now come back here and play another show, guys.

– Nikki Hedrick

The Rough Guide to Ethiopian Jazz

World Music Network

If you only dabble in the genre—and let’s face it, you probably don’t even do that much—this comes off as a perfect introduction. The nine tracks don’t always cry out “Jazz!”—or even Ethiopian—but they’re all surprisingly accessible right down to the ones with (not translated) vocals. Highlights include Samuel Yirga’s “Firma Ena Wereket,” which wouldn’t sound out of place on a Hollywood thriller soundtrack; and Emahoy Tsegue-Maryal Guebrou’s lovely solo piano number, “The Homeless Wanderer.”

– Chris Manson
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