OCDC’s Get The Blessing is a good humored and refreshing urban party! The fat, club era bass meshes surprisingly well with sax. The parameters of free playing are outlined just as a wah–wah re-orients our preconceptions. Hand claps help create a folky spirit that further sketches out OCDC'S sonic blueprint.
The distinctive color of a baritone sax blends perfectly with trumpet enabling each voice to interact while remaining clarified within their own registers. The result of this unique mix is a new rock conscious sophisticated urban jazz.
The opening of Americano Meccano reminds me of the famous opening feed – back guitar from I Feel Fine. The natural sound of birds is cleverly orchestrated setting off the baritone – and resulting in a jazz pop orchestration that isn’t fusion – or even hybrid – but an organic coming together of corollary styles. Peaches n Regalia from Frank Zappa’s Hot Rat’s album comes to mind.
Torque opens with some old school delay – like a Tel-Ray panning across the stereo field. Once again the orchestral sense of the band shines as the Jam Band bass emphasis creates a nice color contrast with the trumpet. The piece builds into a surreal piano cadenza as the trippy rhythmic delay dissipates.
Adagio in Wot Minor begins with some sustained horns, setting up a striking and beautiful moment as the rhythm section enters featuring a 1960's sounding tremolo guitar framing the classic horn lines and defining the OCDC sound. The track vacillates between the two sensibilities: mid- 60’s Blue Note horn melodies and an early progressive rock soundscape – a little bit Soft- Machine – a little bit Zappa. The beautiful delay / reverb guitar drops of aural paint on the canvas of the horn solos and the mysterious – secret agent era guitar… could only be OCDC. The Adagio maintains it’s identity while cohesively revealing it’s musical DNA lineage both in the processed elements and how they interact with the improvisational elements.
Between Fear and Sex opens with a bass and drum / percussion section followed by a sax head. The bass and drum groove is killin’ on this one !
Horns soulfully lay out the melody and mood shifting into an almost klezmery spirit as the piece grooves along till the drums enter through the soaring spirited melodic line. The horns kind of echo each other – entrance wise – as some spacey bass and percussion carry out Fear and Sex.
A funky bass groove will pull you into The Waiting. Mellow high-hats and Andrew Hill era horn lines sail over the rock grooves. Get The Blessing treats each piece as a composition –never lapsing into perfunctory traditional solo head solo forms. OCDC has a keen sense for this kind of orchestral balance – and an excellent compositional awareness that often opens up a spotlight to a hip sound , a distinctive wah-wah and bass sonority or a classic two horn arrangement.
This music is made for a live gig --and these structures are malleable enough so that an infinite amount of variations are conceivable in the context of live shows.
A classic plucked bass groove – ends the piece. As with several other tunes on the recording the narrative often opens or spills into a solo section –giving the production of the record a cinematic dimension. Get The Blessing is a spirited and textural generational get -together!
Two horns open Low Earth Orbit with a muscular beat Lovely tom-toms leading into a sax solo are augmented by some smart trumpet guide lines and finely tuned pedal rich guitar strokes. Swells, flanges and filter sweeps fill out the Low Earth Orbit stratosphere.
Petopia begins with bass and a harpy sounding guitar. The texture here is lovely and strong! The drums – dropping in and out every few bars spotlights the guitar tremolo ethos and effectively sets the party vibe structures in place. More Hot Rats era Zappa feel through these mercurial textures. The hand–clapping – and almost Klezmer like sax over a 60”s funky sounding clav guitar and muted trumpet takes Petopia out as the long sustained reverb of the horn drifts away.