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Friday, September 28th, 2012
Music Reviews

Share the Shelter, Micky Mouth and More... The Beat’s Record Roundup

Various Artists

2nd Annual Share the Shelter Music Fest

One song each from this year’s performers—two if you count the Kelsey Anna/Chris Alvarado duet—plus the added incentive of Beachcomber Music Award winner Matt Miller sawing away on Kelsey’s “Cyclone.” Worth the price for Donnie Sundal’s “Let Me Come Home” (written especially for Alaqua Animal Refuge, the event beneficiary with Shelter House) and new material from Geoff McBride and the Forrest Williams Band. Available at Seaside’s Central Square Records, or you can pick one up at the event Saturday, Sept. 29 at Gulf Place Amphitheatre in Santa Rosa Beach.

- Christopher C. Manson

The Cloudmakers Trio with Ralph Alessi

Live at the Pizza Express

Whirlwind Recordings

The Cloudmakers Trio (Jim Hart on vibes, Dave Smith on drums, and Michael Janisch on bass) add a fourth here in the form of trumpeter Ralph Alessi. The five-track album comes from a 2010 gig at a Soho (London) club. Though “featured,” Alessi takes full part on this spare, 47-minute release, which sounds less like a live performance and more like a quiet session in a small room, with little sprinklings of applause. It’s timeless, respect-the-basics jazz, with plenty of pairing, tripling and soloing for this obviously at-home ensemble. The cover looks like a quick street-artist’s sketch.

- Bruce Collier

Bill Frisell

Solos: The Jazz Sessions

Original Spin Music

If there’s one thing better than a new Bill Frisell release, it’s a new Bill Frisell release of solo performances. This 13-track album (eight songs, five mini-interviews) comes from a 2004 Toronto church recording. Frisell, like Clapton, can make a guitar do whatever he wants. Here, he takes some ironclad standards like “Shenandoah” and “Wildwood Flower,” and renders them utterly his own. His playing sounds thoughtful, shimmering and, at times, almost telepathic to the instrument. It’s not often you’ll find Gershwin sharing a recording with Bob Dylan, but the two seem to get along just fine under Frisell’s magic fingers.

- Bruce Collier

Michael Jackson

Bad – 25th Anniversary Deluxe Edition


His final collaboration with producer Quincy Jones was certainly his worst, but cut the King of Pop some slack. Like to see how you’d follow up a pair of masterpieces like Off the Wall and Thriller. Most of these were hits— even if they haven’t held up as well as “Billie Jean,” “Rock with You,” etc.—and there are treats among the odds and sods (“Abortion Papers”?!?), plus a live set, “I Can’t Stop Loving You” in French and Spanish, and some fun but pointless remixes.

- Christopher C. Manson

Jerry Lee Lewis

The Killer Live! 1964-1970

Hip-O Select/Mercury

A must for any student of classic rock ‘n roll, this compiles four superb in-concert records (plus equally fine outtakes) that pay tribute to Lewis’ heroes (Hank) and contemporaries (Little Richard, Chuck Berry, Elvis, Roy Orbison, Buck Owens). By the time you get to the Las Vegas International Hotel set, the great man shows signs of mellowing out, but only a little bit.

- Christopher C. Manson

Micky Mouth

My Version of Me

Destin’s own Micky Mouth brings southern-styled hip-hop to the beach. The material includes inspirational messages and boastful rhymes about Micky’s ability behind a mic. The production is reminiscent of an old school style that puts Micky’s voice at the front of each track. With great guest appearances by other local hip-hop artists, this release shines a spotlight on a growing music scene.

- Nikki Hedrick

Nothing Short of Pure

Underneath the Palm Trees

The second release from Panama City Beach’s Nothing Short of Pure presents a more polished and mature outing. It still features high energy reggae music dotted with funk, punk and rock influences fans expect, but the band has settled into a relaxed groove. From danceable tunes to ultra chill songs, this album is the perfect companion to a sunny day at the beach.

- Nikki Hedrick

Pioneers! O Pioneers!

There’s No Ghost Left to Haunt This Home

There is a wonderful quietness to this Pensacola-based rock group’s sound, conveying a sense of confidence in their songwriting. The distorted guitar tones and the rolling flow of the songs create a trance-like feeling that envelops the listener. The chorus to “Good Love” is so intensely catchy, you’ll likely find yourself singing along after the first listen. But the gem here is “Between Two Mirrors,” a seven-minute build to an explosion of raw emotion.

- Nikki Hedrick

Shawn Rader

Anything But Average

Big Country Entertainment

An earnest album that speaks lovingly of the Emerald Coast, this makes a welcome addition to any country fan’s catalog. From the lovelorn ballad “Let it Go” to the foot-stomping “Rough Around the Edges” about an idyllic girl, this is an album made for country radio airplay. Rader’s clear, twangy vocals are perfectly framed by traditional country music stylings in this top-notch production.

- Nikki Hedrick