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CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Mostly Other People Do the Killing: Blue

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Here's an enticing prospect. Jazz iconoclasts Mostly Other People Do The Killing re-interpret a classic album beloved by millions of people the world over, lending it a unique MOPDTK spin and rendering it totally unrecognisable. A brave move.The album in question? It's Joni Mitchell's Blue (Reprise, 1971), an iconic slice of Laurel Canyon lushness, the starting point for generations of misty-eyed romantic entanglements. MOPDTK take Mitchell's tales of love and kick them as far out of Laurel Canyon ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Mostly Other People Do the Killing: Blue

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Imagine coming home from work to find the furniture in your house was moved and say, your tooth brush is now on the other side of the bathroom sink. A few inches here, and a few inches there. Would you notice? Maybe yes, if you had been gone just a day. What happens in the same scenario if you returned after a month's vacation. You may never discern the change. Now, consider Mostly Other People Do The Killing's ...

EXTENDED ANALYSIS

Mostly Other People Do the Killing: Red Hot!

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I've been too busy enjoying the music of Mostly Other People Do The Killing (MOPTDK) to realize how controversial they've become. If you doubt their ability to rile the jazz world, all you have to do is post one of their videos on your Facebook page and wait for the ensuing kerfuffle to begin. The core band is comprised of four virtuoso instrumentalists, free-spirits who think nothing of hopping from honest-to-god punk rock, to free improv, to hard bop, to ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Mostly Other People Do the Killing: Red Hot

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Having been simultaneously inspired by and ironic about '80s smooth jazz on the excellent Slippery Rock (Hot Cup Records, 2013), Mostly Other People Do the Killing delve back further into history to explore pre-War genres on Red Hot. It's a tall order for a foursome, so bassist and leader Moppa Elliott has added Brandon Seabrook on banjo, Ron Stabinsky on piano and David Taylor on bass trombone to fully exploit the possibilities inherent in post New Orleans modes. Though the ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Mostly Other People Do the Killing: Slippery Rock

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Strangely enough, bandleader and bassist Moppa Elliot derived inspiration for his compositions on Slippery Rock from smooth jazz albums of the late 1970s and '80s. However, it's more like smooth jazz under siege; with resonating rhythms, scorching and wily horns choruses, the program offers subliminal detections of commercial jazz fare as the band often breaks into complex and peppery free form jaunts. MOPDtK acutely tears down most of the melodic content, only to reassemble it into fractured and largely improvised ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Mostly Other People Do the Killing: Slippery Rock

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Mostly Other Peopele Do the Killing is back! And with it the rightly slandered genre of smooth jazz. This quintet's fifth studio album was penned by MOPDtK bassist Moppa Elliot after a lengthy immersion in the smooth jazz recordings of the late 1970s and '80s. Elliott extracted certain idiomatic phrases, harmonies and embellishments from this superficial and commercial style, incorporated into his own compositions and used all the quartet members' encyclopedic knowledge to shed new light on this often maligned ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Mostly Other People Do the Killing: Slippery Rock

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Like the previous four studio albums by self-styled bebop terrorist band Mostly Other People Do the Killing, Slippery Rock begins with a drum solo over a vamp before kicking into the first tune. That's not the only thing that remains constant. Leader/bassist Moppa Elliott's songwriting talents haven't deserted him either; his charts, named after small Pennsylvania towns, are bursting at the seams with nagging melodies and rhythmic gear changes. Also present and correct are the affectionate nods to older forms ...

INTERVIEWS

Mostly Other People Do the Killing: Setting the Record Straight

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Mostly Other People Do the Killing is frequently typecast as one of today's most humorously irreverent young jazz groups, based in no small part on their provocative name, which was inspired by a quote attributed to inventor Leon Theremin--a survivor of the Soviet gulag who exonerated Stalin because “mostly other people did the killing." Bassist and founder Moppa Elliott (born Matthew Thomas Elliott) has repeatedly insisted in interviews that the band isn't actually intended to be irreverent however, as much ...



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