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Eclectica: Streaming Video Soul

To say that Eclectica are hard to describe is an understatement. Of course, not being familiar with the band does not help, but it also provides a fresh perspective, at least that is my way of thinking. Having no preconceived notions can actually be beneficial when attempting to give a completely honest review which is what all reviewers strive for. When I first spun their new CD Streaming Video Soul I had no idea what to expect. If one goes by the album cover you might expect something like The Beatles as there is a 60s/psychedelic vibe given off. What you do get is a mixture of pop, funk, jazz, rock, world, classical and probably some other styles that I have yet to discover. Eclectica is Tracy Silverman (electric 6-string violin, vocals), Roy "Futureman" Wooten (drums, vocals) and Kyle Whalum (bass, vocals). This is uplifting feel good music that mixes a bunch of styles in the musical blender and creates their own unique version of jazzy funk. The songs venture in and out of styles and movements and one never knows where the last note will take you.

The centerpiece of these songs is the fantastic violin play of Silverman. The BBC called him "the greatest living exponent of the electric violin", and after hearing this CD I would be hard pressed to argue. Another highlight is the virtuoso bass work of Whalum. Often up front in the mix and deliciously complex, he really adds that funky groove these six compositions require.

"Streaming Video Soul" begins with a cool funky bass line, soon followed with electric violin, 60s style backing vocals and soulful lead vocals creating a nice slice of jazzy funk. As in every song, Silverman's performance on the violin is outstanding. He even breaks into the melody of The Doobie Brother's "Black Water" adding a southern boogie vibe that works well with the rest of the grooves. Listen for some exceptional bass in the fun, groove infested "Sister Swag" and lovely acoustic guitar runs in the calming and laid back classically influenced "Peace And Quiet", offering a nice change of pace and one of the nicest melodies on the CD.

For those who want something a bit different, yet still be rewarded with stellar musicianship, you might want to give Eclectica a spin. It is one of those albums that seems to get better after repeated listens and you will have a hard time getting some of these melodies out of your head. Recommended for those who enjoy jazzy, funked up jams and highly infectious grooves.

Track Listing:
1. Streaming Video Soul (7:24)
2. Sister Swag (Too Far To Follow) (8:13)
3. Peace And Quiet (7:37)
4. Nawlins (Stand Together) (11:07)
5. Bi-Polar Disorder (11:18)
6. If You Could Smile Forever (7:31)

Added: June 19th 2009
Reviewer: Jon Neudorf
Related Link: Band's Official Site
Hits: 1827
Language: english

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