How we rate: our writers tend to review music they like within their preferred genres.
One of the biggest treats of reviewing jazz CDs is occasionally have my ears opened wide to a thoroughly excellent CD by an artist or group I've never heard of before. This CD is one such case. Hue & Cry is basically a duo of vocalist Pat Kane and pianist Greg Kane. This is intelligent stuff. Nine of the eleven tunes are by the Kanes. The lyrics are meaty and thoughtful and at times cynical and angst-ridden - no vapid love songs here. The music and the attitude is hip, contemporary, funky, jazzy, intellectual and often in minor keys. The ultra-sassy, funky treatment of "Makin' Whoopee" is a treat as a new take on an old tune. Blazing horns open the CD with "Free Like You." The CD closes with an emotional vocal-piano duet called "How Do You Repair a Heart?" The success of the CD is assured with a bevy of top-notch guest soloists, such as Mike Stern, Michael Brecker, Randy Brecker, and Danny Gottlieb. (Linn AKD057)
Tracks:Free Like You; Iron Cage; All True Man; Remember Me; Virus of Love; I'll Be There for You; Finally; Good and Evil; Makin' Whoopee; Austere and Beautiful; How Do You Repair a Broken Heart? (59:51)
Pat Kane - lead vocals; Greg Kane - acoustic piano, Rhodes, clavinet; Tommy Smith - tenor and soprano sax; Mike Stern - guitar; Brian Kellock - acoustic piano, Rhodes; Michael Brecker - tenor sax; Randy Brecker - trumpet; Danny Gottlieb - drums; Nigel Hitchcock - alto and tenor sax; Steve Sidwell - trumpet and flugelhorn; Ewen Vernal - bass; Sandro Cianncio - drums; Nick Pamphilon - Rhodes.