Review: The sound of Rux's Good Bread Alley features a scaled down sound of live acoustic piano, upright bass, and drums. It's blue-scape brings to mind Son House, Bob Dylan, Nico & The Velvet Underground, as well as the southern fried soul of Bill Withers. If Rux's previous efforts left music critics aesthetically pleased yet full of questions like is it hip hop? Is it r&b? Is it electronica? Is it spoken word? Or is it nu soul? "Good Bread Alley" takes a simpler, less cluttered approach to the artists, often difficult to categorize music. With ten tracks of haunting melodies, beautiful lyrics and Rux's signature lush hypnotic baritone that is often described as a powerful vocal artistry somewhere between Hendrix, Scott-Heronand & Jim Morrison - a voice capable of transfixing or lulling you to sleep. "Good Bread Alley" features collaborations with Vernon Reid ("Lies") Ocean's 11 DJ David Holmes ("Living Room") also features a stellar Bill Withers Cover ("I Can't Write Left Handed").
Scotty Hard's Radical Reconstructive Surgery, John Medeski & Matthew Shipp - "The General"
Matthew Shipp - "ARC"
Nils Petter Molvaer - "Little Indian"
Meat Beat Manifesto - "Wild"
Carl Hancock Rux - "Thadius Star"
Eric Yamamoto - "Melodica Chops"
Craig Taborn - "Junk Magic"
DJ Spooky & Dave Lombardo - "A Darker Shade Of Bleak"
Mike Ladd - "Shake It"
Charlie Hunter & Bobby Previte As Groundtruther - "Transit Of Venus" (feat DJ Logic)
Beans - "4"
The Yohimbe Brothers - "30 Spokes"
William Parker - "Scrapbbok"
David S Ware - "Yesterdays"
Review: Entering their 30th year, Thirsty Ear has gone from the first independent marketing company in the US, to an indie rock label, to pioneering the jazztronica genre with the Blue Series. On September 26th, in celebration of Thirsty Ear's 30 year journey, the Thirsty Ear Blue Series Sampler will be released. From cutting edge jazz to underground hip-hop, Thirsty Ear has been at the forefront of genre bending and innovation in the jazz world since 2000. Some Blue Series artists include DJ Spooky, Charlie Hunter, Vernon Reid, Mike Ladd, Meat Beat Manifesto, Beans, Nils Petter Molvaer, and Matthew Shipp who is also the curator for the Blue Series. A reward for loyal fans, the Thirsty Ear Blue Series Sampler tells the story of the label's latest innovative journey, offering a package that includes quotes and information about each Blue Series album and artist. Likewise, the sampler provides a crash course for new listeners, introducing them to some of Thirsty Ear's groundbreaking artists and collaborations.