Wednesday, February 11, 2015

CD Album Review - The Mavericks - Mono

The background-
The Village Voice blatantly stated, “in a word or three, the Mavericks are cool as sh*t,” while No Depression insisted, “…the energy of a locomotive barreling down a track at a hundred miles an hour. The chemistry between these guys is so good…” 

“This band has always defied the odds and expectations…a Country band from Miami with a Cuban singer? But it works, because people feel the passion,” explained The Mavericks’ guitarist Eddie Perez.

The review-
I dare you to not tap your toe along with the Mavericks new album. It just can't be done. This album is a great illustration when four incredible musicians abandon all preconceived notions they have about genres and ignore what they are told about the narrow lines of country radio and follow their heart. There is some irony that this album of incredible depth of soul is called Mono. Raul Malo's voice captures your attention and is flawless throughout this fascinating combination of instrumentation and influences. Like a Cuban-influenced Pulp Fiction soundtrack, it's frantic, sultry and energetic- all with a swagger that defies definition but entertains just the same. Is it country? Is it jazz? Is its soul? Does it matter? What matters is that it has more passion insole than anything we've heard thus far into 2015.
Standout tracks-
“All Night Long” (Raul Malo)
“What You Do To Me” (Raul Malo, Allen Miller)
“The Only Question Is” (Raul Malo)

Sounds Like-
Does anything really sound like The Mavericks?

The verdict-
 Four stars out of five

1 comment:

  1. Good music, poor recording. It sounds so bad I might never listen to it again - might never learn whether it is merely good music or perhaps great music. It hurts my ears.

    One or two other reviewers might have beat me to this... This is good original material but the recording is just awful. I thought when I first heard it that it sounded crowded and muffled, so I looked at it on Audacity and my worst fears were confirmed...COMPRESSION!!! not a little compression, but COMPRESSION, as in, chopping off all the dynamic peaks and making EVERYTHING LOUDER THAN EVERYTHING ELSE. Why oh why do they do it? Do they really think ruining their music this way, to make it sound louder on a crappy set of computer speakers, is a good thing?

    And, while it is true that a lot of the American music from the '50's sounded superb in mono - and most of the British Invasion music was recorded exclusively in mono until around 1970 - the superb sound quality was because of superb engineering, not because of the mono media. There really is no reason to mix down to mono, let alone to release a product in mono, today. And certainly, degrading the sound at the mixing desk with crazy levels of compression is NEVER, NEVER part of a quality recording.

    Now, I'll admit to owning a $100k music system, but I could hear the compression artifacts on my little $200 system in my office.

    This is no good at all. I guess the town crier on the cover is meant to show us what to expect inside - megaphone music. For shame, Raoul Malo & co.