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Non-Prog CD Reviews

Keyser Soze

The Remedy

Review by Gary Hill

This is great. It feels quite retro in a lot of ways, but there are modern elements here, too. The one prevailing concept is reggae, but jazz and rock sometimes dominate. All in all, this is a diverse set that still flows together well. There’s nothing weak here and some really magical moments. This is just a good disc to put on and let the groove flow.

This review is available in book format (hardcover and paperback) in Music Street Journal: 2013  Volume 6 at lulu.com/strangesound.

Track by Track Review
The Season

This is a great reggae jam. It’s got plenty of jazz in the mix, but one can’t deny that reggae is the central concept here. I love the retro organ solo, too. This is a killer cut and a cool way to start the set.

Do
The balance switches more to the jazz side of the equation here. Still, there is plenty of reggae to be heard. I love the horn section on this one. There’s even a bit of hip hop here. Yet somehow this has a very retro texture to it.
Catch Your Breath
The female vocals are a great touch here. There is a lot of retro jazz in this mix, but they don’t lose the reggae altogether. This is yet another killer tune on an album that is full of them.
The Remedy
The sound that brings the title track in is more decidedly reggae in nature. The vocals on this one are very soulful. There’s really not a lot of jazz in the mix on this one. That said, the melodic guitar solo brings some jazz. There seems to be some rock and roll built into this thing, too.
Dance With Me
Energized retro sounding reggae, this makes me think of UB40 quite a bit. It’s one of the catchiest and most fun tunes here.
Firehouse Sound
As this starts off the reggae elements are still there, but it’s got a lot of space rock in the mix. As it continues both of those sounds are still present, but with a healthy helping of jazz added. This is one of the strongest pieces here and one of my favorites. It just oozes cool.
Soul Ska
Rock and jazz dominate this smoking hot jam. Sure, there’s still plenty of reggae here, but this one gets a lot more straightforward rock infused. It’s another highlight of the set, too. It’s an infectious groove.
Dreidel Dub
As one might guess from the title, this instrumental has a lot of Klezmer music in the mix. It’s also full of jazz sounds. Sure, the reggae still remains, but more of just what drives the rhythm section. This is a cool tune. In fact, it’s one of the most intriguing and entertaining here.
Squeezin'
Another that makes me think of UB40 a bit, there is a lot more pure reggae here. That said, there is also some rap in the mix.
Happy Ending
This instrumental is more jazz than it is anything else. That says there is still a reggae edge to it. It’s a killer tune that works really well.
Harvest Dub
The closing tune is a bouncy reggae instrumental that’s tasty.
 
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