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Rockinghorse, Jools Holland & his rhythm & blues orchestra - Big band making big noise = big fun!,
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This review is from: Rockinghorse (Audio CD)
It has been a bit of a wait since 2008's sublime `The Informer', but it has been worth it. Jools and his gang have come together to provide a swinging set of tunes that really entertain, and get one up and dancing with the really joyful mood.
Joining the big band is a roster of superb guests. The album kicks off with a keyboards duel between Jools and the legendary Allen Toussaint, a really intense battle that leaves you in awe of their technique. Later there is a soulful organ contribution from Booker T, on Duke Ellington's `Blues For New Orleans'. I've often wondered what Jools would make of a Duke composition and between them he and Booker create a wonderful tribute to the great jazz man. The standout guests have to be Chas and Dave. Given both their and the band's propensity for swinging rocking tracks with a touch of humour, I was expecting some fast rocker like Gertcha, but was wonderfully surprised with the reflective `'London belongs to me'. This a slow paced track that has some beautiful lyrics, and is more reminiscent of Chas and Dave's `Ponders end Allotments club'.
There are several tracks sung by band regulars Ruby Turner, Louise Marshall and Rico Rodriguez, along with a few rocking instrumentals. Of the instrumentals `String of pearls' is a real standout - an affectionate look back to the big band swing of Glenn Miller.
This is another classic record of well played swinging tunes from a band who clearly know their stuff, can work easily in a variety of idioms, and really enjoy making music. They all come together to make an irrepressible wall of sound that will have you tapping your feet and humming along. An absolute joy of a record, I cannot recommend it enough!