22.06.29 / Cutty Scooner
I’m new to this artist, but the cover makes it look like a soap opera’s opening credit role theme song. I hope it’s a bit better than that…
Cutty Scooner is a hard group to find info on. They’re a duo from Tokyo, and I think that may be the singer on the cover there. There’s not a lot else on the band available, so they are either very new or very underground. Happy to have found them though, now let’s see what kind of music they make.
There are a lot more instruments than I expected, and they all sound amazing and are well played. It’s refreshing to hear real players and not just midi parts (unless I’ve been duped). Tony W. is put together nicely in a very pensive, almost soft jazz arrangement. Beautiful singing as well, although they should really check the English in the lyrics. It seems I was wrong about the singer being on the cover, as the majority of the song is a male voice. I’m not at all sure who does what in this group. The cover does indeed have the right feeling for this track, the lyrics are like an ambiguous poem, but the general mood is like a soap opera theme from the 90s.
I really like the odd meter (5/4) groove of the song. The odd number matches well with the uncertain feeling of the music. It’s almost anxious in its melodic choices, and the trumpet solo that accents the last third of the track captures that emotion perfectly. And it’s a really good solo. It sounds like a seasoned jazz player. Overall I’m conflicted though, because as much as the track gets right it still feels very stagnant. That may be a problem in the mix more than anything, there isn’t a lot of dynamics in the different parts, so it ends up all feeling kind of right in the middle of expressive range. That being said, the song is really beautiful and I’ll definitely be keeping my eye on this group in the future.
Tony W. is a beautifully crafted, semi-soft-jazz, indie song. The melancholic, surprisingly lush arrangements shine, but the mix is lacking.
Reviewed: 22.07.11 / Reviewer: EB