Thursday, January 22, 2015

Carina and The Six String Preacher - Liquid Think CD Review

First off I must tell a bit of a back story about the copy of Liquid Think that I received from The Six String Preacher (Vince). Vince invited me to the Sportmen's Tavern CD release party for Liquid Think (Thank You Vince!) awhile back and I couldn't attend. I had to visit Vince in person and ask him for a copy to review and Vince was gracious enough to forward me a copy of the CD (once again, Thank You Vince).

I have reviewed music that Vince has composed before and Vince was excited to read my review of Liquid Think. I still have many CD's to review so trying to get ahead of the game I forwarded my copy of Liquid Think to a friend of mine. My friend agreed to review the CD but unbeknownst to me my friend decided to forward the copy I gave him to a friend of his. So my attempt to get ahead brought me two steps back instead. I did not copy Liquid Think to my computer so I had to pay Vince for a new copy. I was happy to pay Vince but at the same time I was annoyed that I didn't copy the CD before I gave away my copy to my friend.

Now on with the review, Liquid Think is at first listen a jazz based CD with torch light singer vocals. But Liquid Think goes way beyond torch light jazz in it's musical scope. Carina & The Six String Preacher (C.S.S.P.) feature a couple of acoustic duo songs, a rockabilly song and a couple of melodic rock songs on Liquid Think.

Here's a little background on torch light singers, they're usually female and Billie Holiday immediately comes to mind when I think of torch light singing. She was singing along with jazz musicians in the 1930's, 40's, and 50's. Carina sings in a similar style to Billie Holiday and current jazz and rockabilly singer Imelda May. Les Paul and Mary Ford come to mind and C.S.S.P. can be compared to the very successful pop/jazz guitar duo from the 50's. C.S.S.P. combine retro, jazz styles, some pop sensibility and smooth as silk vocals to create a unique sound all their own. (new genre...Nu-Lounge?...jazz-noir.)

Liquid Think starts off with Champagne, Smoke, and a Light. The jazzy, guitar chord progression reminded me of the song, Stray Cat Strut when I first heard it. Carina's vocals are sweet and sultry and she even takes a scatting vocal solo during the opening track. The vocal sound is unique, maybe they were sung through a Shure 55 microphone? (see Lee Hoffman's recent photo below)

(Photo of Carina courtesy of Lee Hoffman)

The second track, Honey, highlights Carina's suggestive vocals. Carina shows off her great, jazz style, singing chops. Honey is a way groovy song and it reminds me of something I may have heard on the soundtrack of an old black and white movie. Some Like It Hot starring Marilyn Monroe comes to mind. The keyboard fills sound like a flute, and they add some sweet, melodic color to the song. The S.S.P. takes a guitar solo on Honey. The sound of the guitar and the solo chops are pure jazz.

The title track, Liquid Think, is a really funky, uptempo jazz track with some great keyboard and guitar playing. The chorus is very melodic and catchy, overall the song has a unique and fresh, pop, jazzy sound...(new genre...pop jazz?) The sweet vocals are full of innuendo and sass. The guitar riff right after the chorus vocal highlights the lyric and lifts up the melody perfectly. Great song!

One Way Lust is a melodic, uptempo, rock song. Carina's great vocal track is backed up by a sweet sounding backing track. The drums, keys, guitar and bass sound excellent. The overall sound on One Way Lust leans more toward alternative rock than jazz. Carina's vocals are just the cat's meow on One Way Lust.

My Baby's Got A Cadi is a rocker. The drum track performed by John Brady is absolutely hopping! The sound on this song is full out, 50's, rockabilly romp. The hand claps and vocal scatting on the outro sound great. The S.S.P. shows off his rockabilly chops on the guitar track, this guy can play it all!

Snowflake is different than all the rest of the songs on Liquid Think and this is my fave on the CD so far. The innovative guitar playing of the S.S.P. instantly creates a dreamy, ethereal mood with the opening guitar figure and the djembe playing by Carina creates the perfect rhythm to accompany the guitar. The vocals work well with the guitar to complete the spacey feel of the song. The chimes add a great musical touch to the song.
I can imagine and hear the opening guitar line turned full-up with distortion in my head, creating a heavy, hard rock song.

(Photo of The Six String Preacher courtesy of Julie Ann Schumacher Photography)

Destiny starts off with a sweet guitar intro, the feeling is rock and the guitar sound reminds the sound Doug Pettibone frequently uses. Destiny has a pop rock feel and sound, it could be compared to Sheryl Crow at times but Carina's vocal accents and inflections bring a unique sound to the song.

4:39 sounds like a rock/jazz love song. Carina's vocal talents really shine through on this song. The music/backing track that support the chorus sounds really cool and unique, the vocal dubs come together to create a very listenable and melodic sound. The verses' sound like Kiss Me by Sixpence None the Richer. Great alternative rock/pop song!

Jack Ash is another bebop, nu-lounge, jazz jam that features some great singing by Carina.

Lullaby For Jonny is an acoustic duo song that is different from the rest of the songs. Carina's oohs, aah's and scats create a dreamy feel while the S.S.P. accompanies on acoustic guitar. This song reminded me of the Beatles classic Blackbird at certain points.

The last song, One Way Lust, is a acoustic duo version of the 4th track. The tempo is a little slower which allows to Carina to stretch out the vocals and sing a bit more than the 1st version.

I highly recommend Liquid Think to any jazz music fans out there in blog land.
I also would recommend Liquid Think to any local music fan seeking something new and different to listen to.

"Jazz Noir" Carina and The Six String Preacher Facebook link
Carina and The Six String Preacher SoundCloud link

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