February 16, 2015 | Posted in MUSIC | By Jason Sositko
The Budos Band is a Daptone Records Afro-soul unit, perhaps known best for their organic freewheeling live shows. Where diverse music lovers from rock, jazz, and soul can all meet and dig this hip shaking unit.
How do they do it? When I first heard about Burnt Offering the bands latest release, and the last one since 2010’s Budos Band III, my eyebrow raised with bewilderment?
How in the world was a funky Afro-beat brass band going to meld late 60’s era psychedelia and the occult influenced sound of bands like Uriah Heep and Black Sabbath?
Well, first, don’t worry, if you like the Budos Band’s style, you will not be disappointed here. I have to say, the first thing that came to my mind was the Graham Bond Holy Magick record, maybe Iron Butterfly too.
I didn’t at any point think Black Sabbath for instance, the title track is as close as they come. In fact, I think that the band did a fine job finding something new to say, while remaining firmly entrenched in the sound that drew me to them.
I think The Budos Band can get away with a little more changing of their sound down the road. Not that they give a darn what the masses think. Considering how much they tour, this is a workin’ man’s band, I think most fans will follow them where ever they end up, hopefully we will get a new album in the future sooner than every 4 years.
I have to say that this was also the first time I really thought I heard a clear Chicago influence, circa Chicago Transit Authority 1969. I could almost envision Chicago doing something like this had they created an instrumental only album that was heavily horn focused.
Burnt Offering offers just enough of that sinister sound of the occult, without every mocking it. That was important to me, had this become a parody, I would have been very disappointed.
No doubt Burnt Offering is The Budos Band you love 100%, just sprinkle in some heavy bottom end bass, some fuzzy guitars and psychedelic farfisa organ for an authentic brooding effect.
In one sense I was a little disappointed, not in the album it’s self, but that it wasn’t shockingly metallic or something? It just turned out to be another great Afro-funk album with enough Blue Oyster Cult and other occult darkness. The entire album ebbs an flows seamlessly as a prog rock psychedelic Afro-beat stew of simply damn good music, it demands repeated listens to hear the subtleties too.
I also think this new direction could open the door for more diverse ideas down the road, perhaps some artist specific albums like Miles Davis or John Coltrane from Modern jazz?
Maybe classic rock like the Doors or Frank Zappa? I could see a set of Zappa tunes reworked the Budos way, couldn’t you? Led Zeppelin would be too much to ask probably? The Budos Band strikes me as a band that would rather just play their own thing though, and not resort to out right cover territory, and that’s OK to my ears.
Photo used with permission, via Amazon.com
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Jason Sositko, a freelance writer and entrepreneur is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com. I also use services such as Viglink and Skimlinks to earn income via links placed inside articles.
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