Album review overview: Saxon, Dave Brubeck, Robbie Krieger and more

Photo (c) Jorge Fakhouri Filho

Dozens of new albums arrive at Maxazine’s editorial staff every week. Way too many to listen to them all, let alone review them. It ensures that too many albums are left behind. And that’s a shame. That is why today we post an overview of albums that arrive at the editors in short reviews.

Chanel – ¡AGUA!

After conquering the country with her participation in the Eurovision Song Contest, Chanel now presents her debut album “¡Agua!”. Born in Havana in 1991, but raised in Spain from the age of four, Chanel Terrero began singing and acting studies at the age of six, which led to a career as an actress and musical performer, with roles in productions such as “The Lion King” and “Mamma Mia”. In 2022, Chanel won the Benidorm Fest and represented Spain in the Eurovision Song Contest, where she came third. It includes songs like “SloMo,” “Clavaíto” and her latest single with FMK: “Ahora Que No Te Tengo”. This eclectic album contains twelve songs that reflect her musical style and preferences: from urban rhythms to R&B, funk carioca, bachata and ballad. All in all, a varied musical adventure that will not leave you indifferent! The album features collaborations with Abraham Mateo, Ptazeta, Argentina’s FMK, Brazil’s Ze Felipe and Italy’s Rocco Hunt; no unknown names in the scene. Sometimes Chanel sounds a bit like Shakira, sometimes a bit Belle Perez, but overall just nice Chanel. (Norman van den Wildenberg) (8/10) (Sony Music Spain)

Saxon – Hell, Fire And Damnation

Fortunately, the departure of founding member guitarist Paul Quinn does not mean the end of NWOBHM legend Saxon. A few more years this band can celebrate its 50th anniversary. Paul Quinn has been given a worthy successor in the person of Brian Tatler, who we know as the guitarist of the band Diamond Head, which also played an important role in the NWOBHM and has been an inspiration for many bands, of which Metallica is the best known. Singer Biff Byford, now well over 70, still sings like he did in his younger years. The sound is also fine. Responsible for this are Biff Byford and Andy Sneap, who also mastered the album. This 24th album offers exactly what one would expect from a Saxon album. Solid traditional Metal/Rock. The best songs are the opener, the title track and the first single “Hell, Fire And Damnation” and “Fire And Steel” which is full of impressive guitar solos and is musically the most interesting song on the album. The level of its predecessor “Carpe Diem” (2022) is not quite reached, but Biff and associates do not have to be ashamed of “Hell, Fire And Damnation” (Ad Keepers) (7/10) (Silver Lining Music)

Dave Brubeck Quartet – Live from The Northwest, 1959

The Dave Brubeck Quartet’s live album “Live from The Northwest, 1959” takes you back in time to the vibrant jazz atmosphere of the late 1950s. Recorded with exceptional sonic clarity on April 4, 1959, at the popular Multnomah Jazz Club and on 5 April in the auditorium of nearby Clark College, the quartet previewed the repertoire for the better-known “Gone with the Wind” sessions later that month. With a tracklist including compelling pieces such as “Multnomah Blues,” “Lonesome Road” and “Gone with the Wind,” the Dave Brubeck Quartet takes you on an unforgettable musical journey full of virtuosity and emotion. The highlight of the album is Dave Brubeck’s composition “Two Part Contention,” which adds a welcome classical nuance by combining the influence of Bach and reinterpreting “Two Part Invention” as a jazz piece. With this, the quartet shows its versatile skills and the characteristic style for which it was so famous. This album is a valuable discovery for both jazz lovers and newcomers who want to experience the timeless magic of Brubeck. (Norman van den Wildenberg) (8/10) (Brubeck Editions/MVD Entertainment Group)

The Rods – Rattle The Cage

The Rods is best known for the fact that singer, guitarist and founder David Feinstein is a first cousin of legend Ronnie James Dio, with whom he played in the band Elf. This is not entirely correct. Musically, this band also holds its own, although not in the premier league, but in the sub-top together with similar bands such as Anvil and Raven. The Rods guarantee rock-solid old-school hard rock/metal. The first thing you notice about “Rattle The Cage” is the powerful production that gives the drum fills and guitar work in particular an extra ‘bite’. The best songs are the over 7-minute epic “Cry Out Loud” and the speed metal song “Metal Highways”. You shouldn’t expect originality on “Rattle The Cage,” but well-played old-school hard rock/metal. (Ad Keepers) (6/10) (Massacre)

Robbie Krieger & the Soul Savages

Robbie Krieger? Correct! That was the guitarist of the Doors, and yes, the man is still alive he is still making music. Under the name Robbie Krieger & the Soul Savages, a very nice musical album has just been released. He recorded this album with a backing band whose members previously made their mark with Chaka Khan, Stevie Wonder, Aretha Franklin and Lenny Kravitz. It is clear that with these musicians this album has more groove than anything else theatrical music by the Doors. Wonderful music, heavily influenced by funk, soul and with a wonderfully playing Krieger, who brings a Wes Montgomery-like feel to his playing here and there on this album. Ten wonderful tracks become more and more enjoyable the more you listen. Don’t expect innovation or silliness. This is simply music at the highest level. Don’t try it at home, because this is done by real professionals. (Anton Dupont) (8/10) (Mascot Label/the Players Club)

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