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Richard Niles Bandzilla: Bandzilla Rises!!!

Bandzilla is the brain child of talented musician/arranger/composer Richard Niles. Niles has been around now for decades. After graduating from Berklee College he moved to London and has worked with the likes of Sara Brightman, Dusty Springfield, Pet Shop Boys, Leo Sayer, Paul McCartney, Ray Charles, Joe Cocker, and the list goes on. The Bandzilla project began life as a house band for a London based television series before they released their first album Blue Movies in 1987. It has taken many years but the band is back with their sophomore release Bandzilla Rises!!! and the results are excellent. The band plays a unique brand of jazz fusion combining soul, R&B, funk, big band jazz and pop with a '60s flavour that is undeniable. Suffice to say categorizing this band is not an easy task.

A short spoken word intro begins the disc followed by the funky big band jazz of "Live As One". The groove is vibrant and the vocals have an endearing '60s style charm that adds to the positive vibes. A little funky R&B can be heard on "You Can't Get There From Here" whereas "This World Is Mine" is as much soul as it is jazz. "L.A. Existential" is another cool track having a smooth west coast sound that combines jazz, R&B, soul, pop, well you get the picture. Really good stuff, especially how Niles puts his own unique spin on big band jazz. Throughout the disc you will be treated to great grooves and excellent solos, including sax, trumpet, trombone, drum, guitar. While the band is very talented and the musicianship is stellar it never feels over the top. Plain and simple, this is just a very good bunch of tunes with deep infectious grooves, fine melodies and a swinging good time had by all. Highly recommended, and not just for fans of big band jazz.

Track Listing:
1. Bandzilla Rises!!!
2. Live As One
3. You Can't Get There From Here
4. L.A. Existential
5. This World Is Mine
6. Compassion's In Fashion
7. Stone Jungle
8. The 5th Elephant
9. The Alligator From West 15th
10. Love Don't Mean A Thing
11. Welcome To My World
12. Talkin' In Whispers
13. Tip For A Toreador
14. Why Is This World So Strange?

Added: January 15th 2017
Reviewer: Jon Neudorf
Score:
Related Link: Band's Official Site
Hits: 956
Language: english

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