Winnipeg Free Press Newspaper Archives Jul 16 2015, Page 28

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Winnipeg Free Press (Newspaper) - July 16, 2015, Winnipeg, Manitoba C M Y K PAGE C4 THIS WEEK’S SINGLES JASON DERULO Cheyenne ( Warner) With a somewhat sinister, chuggy Giorgio Moroder- style synth line, the latest single off Derulo’s new Everything Is 4 album is seriously rooted in the ’ 80s. If Michael Jackson had done a song for the Miami Vice s oundtrack, it might have sounded something like this. š š š 1 . 2 DEMI LOVATO Cool for the Summer ( Universal) Releasing a song with the word “ summer” in its title during the summer is fairly trite. But we’re willing to give Ms. Lovato a pass, because this is really quite good. She starts off soft and sexy before erupting into some massive rock riffs, voracious vocals and slightly nutty- sounding “ ooh- we- ooh- we- ooooh” s that’ll be stuck in your head for days. š š š 1 . 2 DURAN DURAN feat. Janelle Monae & Nile Rodgers Pressure Off ( Warner) Teasing their upcoming 14th studio album, Paper Gods , the enduring English new wave band teams with Uptown Funk hitmaker Mark Ronson and Chic guitarist Nile Rodgers, and the results are, as expected, very funky, harkening back to their Notorious era ( you may recall that Nile Rodgers produced that album). š š š 1 . 2 — Steve Adams new music œ POP & ROCK A REVIEW OF THIS WEEK’S ALBUM RELEASES up town WINNIPEG FREE PRESS œ THURSDAY, JULY 16, 2015 4 ¥ œ POP & ROCK œ JAZZ / R& B œ CLASSICAL Jason Isbell Something More than Free ( Southeastern Records) WINNIPEG Folk Festival- goers heard many of these 11 songs last Friday night, as Isbell and his ace band, the 400 Unit, served up a beautiful set of finely honed, roots- tinged rock. That many of these songs blended so seamlessly into the show speak to their quality. Isbell is known for painting pictures with words, bringing his listeners into the torments and triumphs of the working- class southerners who populate his songs. A lifelong search for peace ( grace, even) is the theme of Something More than Free , delivered straight- up as Isbell and producer Dave Cobb opted for a sparse, acoustic- first approach, with the 400 Unit’s instrumentation slowly growing into the tunes. First track If It Takes a Lifetime introduces a man who has realized a life of drinking has nearly ruined him and showing up to his dead- end job in order to keep growing. And so it goes… Flagship opens with a couple sitting in the lobby of a rundown hotel “ a thousand miles apart” and becomes a vow to never get that way. How to Forget looks to the future as a way out of the “ scary movie” of the past and Children of Children , likely this record’s most personal song, is an adult child’s recognition of the sacrifices his teenage parents made. DOWNLOAD: If It Takes a Lifetime, How to Forget, Hudson Commodore — John Kendle Pete Townshend Truancy: The Very Best Of ( Universal Music Canada) AS Who guitarist/ songwriter Pete Townshend recently said, “ We are in the age of back catalogues.” As if on some kind of dollar- bound timetable, along comes this 17- track set of songs that makes the titular claim of being the very best of Pete’s solo work, which is true, especially if you missed purchasing the previous “ best” compilations from 1996, 2005 and 2007. Truancy, of course, is leading directly into a substantial 2016 re- issue campaign of Townshend’s solo material and to be frank, the album is a total cash- grab. It’s hard to separate the man from his other band, and anyone who is a solo- Pete fan is really just forestalling playing Who’s Next or Tommy f or the billionth time. Indeed, some of the better Pete tracks are here, and while it’s doubtful that fans haven’t heard Sheraton Gibson, Let My Love Open the Door or Rough Boys before, if they haven’t, here they are… once again. Whether this manoeuvre is pure marketing brilliance as a teaser for the upcoming reissues or simply a way to insure Townshend’s money train steams on into his dotage is anyone’s guess. For super, ultra- completists only — and even they may balk. š š š DOWNLOAD: A Heart To Hang on To, Face Dances ( Pt. 2) — Jeff Monk Various Artists Nina Revisited… A Tribute to Nina Simone ( Sony) THIS album is the companion piece to the Netflix documentary What Happened, Ms. Simone? about the life of singular singer and pianist Nina Simone in the context of the civil- rights movement of the 1960s. It deserves attention, on at least two counts. First, it recasts songs written and covered by Simone by contemporary acts such as Usher, Mary J. Blige and Gregory Porter. A superb example, resonating in 2015 America’s fraught moment in race relations is R& B singer Jazmine Sullivan’s take on Randy Newman’s Baltimore, about the Charm City, where “ it’s hard, just to live.” The second newsworthy element about Nina Revisited is Lauryn Hill’s contributions. Hill was executive producer and performed on five tracks. The former Fugee hasn’t released a studio album in 17 years, but she’s clearly energized by the opportunity to honour one of her heroes. She raps over Simone’s I’ve Got Life , and turns chanteuse on Ne Me Quitte Pas . Her dramatic interpretation of Black Is the Color of My True Love’s Hair is a high point on Nina Revisited , along with Alice Smith’s hypnotic take on Screaming Jay Hawkins’ I Put A Spell On You and the lone track by Simone herself, I Wish I Knew How It Would Feel to Be Free , which closes out the album with inimitable, unbowed spirit. š š š DOWNLOAD: Black Is the Color of my True Love’s Hair, I Put a Spell on You — Dan DeLuca Budapest Festival Orchestra, Iván Fischer Mahler Symphony No. 9 ( Channel Classics) IN this new release by Channel Classics, Hungary’s Iván Fischer conducts the Budapest Festival Orchestra in Mahler’s Symphony No. 9 , an epic work calling for both courage of one’s convictions and nerves of steel in bringing the late- Romantic Austrian composer’s musical adieu to life. Completed in 1909, Mahler’s final symphony showcases his renowned orchestration, including a wide palette of timbral colour. Fischer ably leads the ensemble that he co- founded with Zoltán Kocsis in 1983 through the 75- minute work’s multiple stylistic and mood shifts. The opening Andante comodo, laced with a syncopated rhythmic motif, gives way to the next folk- dance- inspired movement, where its rustic Ländler gradually morphs into a biting, sarcastic waltz. The third movement titled, Rondo- Burleske, likewise unfolds as a savage double fugue marked by crisp counterpoint, with the BFO’s top brass spitting out every note. But the fourth- movement Adagio, including well- blended strings, proves the beating heart of the entire work, with the maestro sensitively allowing its elegiac voice to speak with world- weary resignation until its final, dying notes. š š š š — Holly Harris Jason Derulo C_ 04_ Jul- 16- 15_ FP_ 01. indd C4 7/ 15/ 15 4: 33: 24 PM

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