Monday, April 09, 2007

Woot! (and Carlo Mombelli)

Side-tracked, I know, but I found this exciting: I won the Monday Overheard in New York headline contest! Would've been cooler if they had told me, but regardless. I'll be a comedian yet, I tell you. I mean, hell, if Carlos Mencia is considered funny, there's hope for anyone.

Back to SA Music.

Carlo Mombelli has released a new album entitled I Stared into My Head. If you haven't heard him, he's got one of the most innovative approaches to playing electric bass ever. His performance on Johnny Fourie's CD of jazz standards is stunning in its originality.

His solo albums tend to steer towards the experimental without ever going too abstract. I personally recommend Bats in the Bellfry, but you'd be advised to take whatever you can find. As far as the new album, it's overall quite excellent. The lineup (including folks like Marcus Wyatt and Sidney Mnisi) is stellar, and the use of a vocalist is very cool. I love the vocalist especially on "Soi" (opening track), and wished they had utilized that style more throughout the rest of the album ("that style" means "vocalese Bobby McFerrin-styled flights of fancy").

Mombelli's previous albums always really engage the intellect, but this one has a solo bass track entitled "Solo Bass for Gina" that really makes me tear up. Absolutely gorgeous...

So check this guy out if you like your jazz a little left of standard! Would he be pissed at me for calling it "jazz"? I'm not sure. Whatever you'd like to call it, it's fabulous stuff.