on 13 December 2009
Full marks to the compilers at Capitol for their "Ultra Lounge" idea, which, to the best of my knowledge, has run to at least 18 volumes to date. What an excellent way to breathe new life into your back catalogue. The advent of the CD certainly rejuvenated the record business - let's face it, who would have bothered buying this type of thing on reissued LP's?
The period covered on this particular volume covers the years 1957-64, and whilst almost exclusively instrumental, a couple of great vocal tracks have been thrown in. Capitol have put out a good package here, even including a cocktail recipe in the sleeve notes!
To quote: "This music puts you in a place - a Tijuana strip bar at 3 a.m." and the album has definitely got that brassy, late-night feel.
For me, tunes like "Night Train", "Harlem Nocturne", "Street Scene '58", and "Like Young" kind of sum up this sound. I'm not normally a big band fan but as long as the tune is a reasonably familiar one I can take it!
I don't think it really matters who the artists are - after all, there have been umpteen versions of "Route 66" for example. I'm sure any number of these songs have been used as background for TV series, and for me they bring forth images of black and white crime-type drama from the late 50's onwards.
Excellent stuff to listen to in the car whilst stuck on the M25 - highly recommended.