All About Jazz needs your help and we have a deal. Pay $20 and we'll hide those six pesky Google ads that appear on every page, plus this box and the slideout box on the right for a full year! You'll also fund website expansion.
With its second release Your Mind, LA prog-rock band ONOFFON blends bass, guitar, and drums along with occasional keyboards, bluesy harp, percussion and reeds. These 11 tunes fluctuate between ethereal acoustic numbers and dark cosmic rockers. Your Mind is jazzier and more rhythmically complex than the band's debut Surrender Now. In fact, some tracks bring to mind the latest incarnation of King Crimson, my all-time favorite prog-rock outfit. Though Don Lake is a capable vocalist and the two female backups add some nice soulful touches, lyrics are not really this band's forte. Fortunately ONOFFON plays to its strengths and tackles more instrumentals this time around. Lake (guitars, harp, vocals), Dave Goode (drums, percussion) and Von Babasin (bass, vocals) really shine on "Opus" and "Shadowglass," the latter a complex instrumental piece with a spooky groove, spacey guitar, and some beautiful playing by Glenn Garrett on alto flute. Other high points include the bluesy "Alley Want," the complex rocker "Ocean's Cry," and "Bebe's Song," an old-timey jazz number that offers a refreshing change of pace. I've outgrown most progressive rock, but I kinda like ONOFFON. Could have done without the closing track "Credits," however.
I love jazz because it is a pure American music and can be expressed in different ways depending upon the artist.
I was first exposed to jazz while as a teenager I listened to Duke Ellington, Benny Goodman, and Louis Armstrong, on a jazz
radio station in New York City.