All About Jazz

Home » Articles » CD/LP/Track Review

6

We Want Groove: Rock Candy Funk Party

Glenn Astarita By

Sign in to view read count
This quartet repurposes the jazz-funk sounds of yesteryear into a tasteful, eclectic mix, packed with memorable compositions and aided by the crystalline recording process, enabling the music to breathe amid great detail and depth. Featuring blues-rock guitar hero Joe Bonamassa trading licks with guitarist Ron DeJesus, Rock Candy Funk Party was recorded at drummer Tal Bergman's studio, denoting the band's debut.

Rock Candy Funk Party is a production that sports a festive aura, We Want Groove are prophets of good cheer. The album emanated from Bergman and DeJesus' Groove Vol. 1 (2007, Independent) followed by live performances, ultimately leading to the We Want Groove aggregation. The musicians' collective resumes comprise gigs and performances with top rock, jazz and pop acts, spanning multiple genres, and their sensibilities and approaches to various musical platforms are impeccably transposed to disc.

The jazz-funk, soul brew is often given a bluesy touch by Bonamassa who is situated on the left channel while DeJesus is heard on the right channel, tendering a well-defined soundstage. In a loose sense the guitarists are role players, alternating between the jazz, funk and blues-rock idioms.

One of the more prominent examples of the retro vibe is "The Best Ten Minutes of Your Life," which could parallel a soundtrack from one of the old Blaxploitation flicks with inferences to the late, blues and funk guitarist Johnny "Guitar" Watson's oozing notes and trickling phraseology, tinted with echo and reverb. Otherwise, keyboardist Renato Neto kicks the proceedings off with spacey and dream-laden Fender Rhodes treatments, followed by bassist Mike Merritt distinct groove-building and Bergman's simple metronomic hi-hat pulse. With breezy and drifting synth overlays, the guitarists eventually spawn a counter-melody to inject a tuneful theme built on effective use of space via a multi-hued outline, piloting a blissful primary melody. They inject multi-colored sound-shaping mechanisms into this piece that also benefits from an insightful production, designed with a Midas touch.

One of the enthralling aspects of the album, other than the solid material and stellar audio engineering, pertains to the bands manifold rhythmic flows and perceptive use of dynamics. Of course the dance-ability factors are prevalent throughout, but it's a hybrid concoction that yields significant rewards where the old synchronizes with the new, as the group artfully contemporizes and uplifts the tried and true.

Track Listing: Octopus-e; Spaztastic; Ode to Gee; We Want Groove; The Best Ten Minutes of Your Life; Animal/Work; Dope On a Rope; Root Down (and Get It); New York Song

Personnel: Joe Bonamassa: guitars; Ron DeJesus: guitars; Mike Merritt: bass; Renato Neto: keyboards; Tal Bergman: drums, percussion.

Title: Rock Candy Funk Party | Year Released: 2013 | Record Label: J&R Adventures

Tags

comments powered by Disqus

Related Articles

Read Alive In The East? CD/LP/Track Review
Alive In The East?
by Chris May
Published: June 22, 2018
Read Love Stone CD/LP/Track Review
Love Stone
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: June 22, 2018
Read Empty Castles CD/LP/Track Review
Empty Castles
by Mark Corroto
Published: June 22, 2018
Read Myths and Morals CD/LP/Track Review
Myths and Morals
by Jakob Baekgaard
Published: June 22, 2018
Read The Sum Of My Pardon CD/LP/Track Review
The Sum Of My Pardon
by Jim Olin
Published: June 22, 2018
Read Postcard Collection CD/LP/Track Review
Postcard Collection
by Jack Bowers
Published: June 21, 2018
Read "In Transit" CD/LP/Track Review In Transit
by Friedrich Kunzmann
Published: December 27, 2017
Read "First Impressions" CD/LP/Track Review First Impressions
by Chris May
Published: March 29, 2018
Read "Exotica" CD/LP/Track Review Exotica
by Chris May
Published: March 19, 2018
Read "Desert" CD/LP/Track Review Desert
by Mark Sullivan
Published: June 1, 2018
Read "Empty Castles" CD/LP/Track Review Empty Castles
by Mark Corroto
Published: June 22, 2018
Read "Wes Montgomery In Paris" CD/LP/Track Review Wes Montgomery In Paris
by Franz A. Matzner
Published: January 24, 2018