Thursday, September 21, 2006

OnOffOn - Bridge To Presage CD

Hear The Track Here

Here's a familiar refrain, and one I'm sure you are heartily sick of. 'Come on', someone says in a heated online debate, 'TRUE stars can't come from the internet you guys are just jerking with yourself'. Welp, despite the joys, and hairy palms that onanism gives you, I dispute this statement adamantly. See, this is a VERY large scene and lots of areas stray into the very real world of music, musicians and it's attendant business sharks. To my mind, one of the undoubted stars of this new age, happens to be also one of the most talented, individualistic and thrilling groups on the internet: OnOffOn

As a recognised reviewer, I get lots of CDs, but I review very, very few and even less do I actually ASK an artist for a CD. Not to review mind, but because I truly meant every word I have just written above, and I WANTED the damn thing. I bumped into Von Babasin a while ago on Mike-K's Saturday Night Rocks on Songplanet and twisted his arm to send me a copy of their new 'Bridge To Presage' work. Honest, I never intended to review this, but after spending almost a week living with the work of art that is so lovingly captured in it's 9 jazzily sublime tracks. Now normally this is where I would break down and do a track by track mini review but funnily enough, there is NO way I could commit that kind of sacrilege. Bridge To Presage is of a peice, one peice that encompasses the excellent standard of work I have to expect from these most accomplished musicians.

Dave Goode, Von Babasin and Don Lake are OnOffOn and are joined on this CD by Marcus Duke (piano), the sublimely fluid Glen Garrett (saxes/flute), Ron King(trumpet/flugelhorn) and Bob Chesney (trombone) and if this isn't - in every way - THE most commercial jazz grouping I've heard in a long time, then I don't know what I am talking about. Long time readers will already be aware of my liking for OnOffOn's music, The Gift Must Always Move lives permanently on my playlist and shows no sign whatsoever of departing anytime soon. Truthfully, I am BLOWN AWAY by the sheer style, verve, musical dexterity and innovation shown on this remarkable CD, and I am certain even non jazz fans will find much to love about it. Oh, and stars? God knows how many recognised awards these guys have scooped up so far (do a search onthe bandname, you'll see what I mean) not to mention this very CD being chosen as Jazz Album of the Year from International Online Music Awards (IOMA) which will go nicely with their Artist Of The Year award in 2005. Personally, I really run out of superlatives for this work, and ask you to go have a listen and buy, buy, buy... MY Jazz Album of the Decade even :D

Awesome, breathtaking musical vision.


Von Babasin said...

I just wanted to thank Steve for such a wonderful review of our music... It's hard in today's music climate to commercially compete while playing this genre of music, but, as an artist, you have to remain true to your artistic principles and play music from the heart. Thank you, Steve, for listening with your heart... much respect, Von Babasin

Von Babasin said...

Hey Steve - one more thing I wanted to add - this album wasn't chosen Best 'Jazz' Album, it was chosen "2006 Best Album" - a much more honored distinction considering jazz albums rarely get to compete with the more commercially popular genres in the music world... cheers!