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 » Full Dark, No Stars - Stephen King's new novella questions mankind's ability to trust others.
[02.21.2011 by Bridget Doyle]

MUSIC

 » The Top 30 Albums of 2010 - Fashionably, fabulously late, our favorite music (and believe me, there was a LOT) of 2010, the year that some have called the best year for music ever. And only some of those fools work here. Plenty of usual suspects, lots of ties and a few surprises that I won't spoil, including our unexpected #1.
[12.24.2010 by The LAS Staff]

MUSIC

 » Live: Surfer Blood/The Drums at Lincoln Hall, Chicago, IL - Remember when Weezer used to put together records that you could sing along to and rock out to? That's what Surfer Blood's show was like!
[11.04.2010 by Cory Tendering]

Music Reviews

Screaming Females - Castle Talk
»Screaming Females
Castle Talk
Don Giovanni
Trent Reznor & Atticus Ross - The Social Network [Original Soundtrack]
»Trent Reznor & Atticus Ross
The Social Network [Original Soundtrack]
The Null Corporation
Deerhunter - Halcyon Digest
»Deerhunter
Halcyon Digest
4AD
No Age - Everything in Between
»No Age
Everything in Between
Sub Pop
Robyn - Body Talk Pt. 1/ Body Talk Pt. 2
»Robyn
Body Talk Pt. 1/ Body Talk Pt. 2
Konichiwa
The Walkmen - Lisbon
»The Walkmen
Lisbon
Fat Possum
DJ Wally
Nothing Stays the Same
Thirsty Ear Records

Rating: NR/10 ?


October 1, 2004
Thirsty Ear accommodates jazz enthusiasts who reside all across the spectrum. Their focus is certainly more honed in on the avant-garde and free-form arenas than bop or traditional, but within the far out realms that they service, there are so many sub-genres and micro-styles that diversity remains an integral part of the Thirsty Ear repertoire. One of the Ear's new releases is DJ Wally's jazz-downtempo fusion disc Nothing Stays the Same, released simultaneously with the David S. Ware String Ensemble's venture into free floating string jazz, Threads. Although some of the same characters appear on both of these releases, including Matthew Shipp on assorted electric and acoustic pianos, Guillermo E. Brown on drums, and David S. Ware on saxophone. Besides these common cast members though, these releases are worlds apart, exemplifying Thirsty Ear's diversity and penchant for treading new ground.

For all the moments of failure and divinity though, these two releases assuredly serve as a testament to the prowess of the Thirsty Ear label, and more importantly to the shockingly creative and versatile jazz community that exists in New York City and beyond. DJ Wally and David S. Ware are but two components of this scene who will hopefully continue to experiment and innovate long into the future.

Where Ware's disc is full of new form jazz that is rooted in different string sounds, DJ Wally's disc, on the other hand, is a very different affair. Wally has created some amazing boom-bap style hip hop instrumentals in the past with his partner Swingsett, as well as fresh and skittering drum and bass. Nothing Stays the Same finds him in the unfortunate position of attempting the easily boring genre of electronic-jazz fusion. The main issue here is that this style can easily sink into car commercial type music, existing just as a background with no real impetus or drive. Wally's beats are capable but fall into painful repetition as soloists freak out via electric flute or soprano sax. There are several moments of eerie DJ Spooky style virtuosity, dub sounds bubbling up from beneath the beat, but most of the album consists of run of the mill jazz hop that reminds you of buying into the Us 3 hype of the early 90's. The Low End Theory this ain't.

Reviewed by Jonah Flicker
Jonah Flicker writes, lives, drinks, eats, and consumes music in New York, via Los Angeles. He once received a fortune in a fortune cookie that stated the following: "Soon, a visitor shall delight you." He's still waiting.

See other reviews by Jonah Flicker

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