This week’s Sound Check kicks off with my thoughts about Andy Summers’ new instrumental recording, followed by reviews of louder recordings from Junkyard and Rhino Bucket. My review of a cool cat/person buddy movie wraps things up.
‘Triboluminescence,’ Andy Summers (A Flickering Shadow Production,☆☆☆)
This new instrumental CD is the first one your reviewer has heard from former Police guitar titan Andy Summers, who was one of many New Animals before allying with Sting and Stewart Copeland.
He plays all the instruments here, including guitar, bass, drums, percussion, psaltery, latva, banjo and keyboards.
Favorite moments from this sometimes-cinematic-sounding album are the chiming title tune (which lasts too long), the laid-back “Shadyland” and the many movements of “Gigantopithecus.”
This one isn’t my bag, but some listeners may love it.
‘High Water,’ Junkyard (Acetate Records,☆☆☆1/2)
These two April 21 CDs present bands that haven’t been recording for a long time.
“High Water” is Junkyard’s first album since 1991, and “The Last Real Rock N’ Roll” is the first Rhino Bucket recording since 2007. Junkyard (vocalist David Roach, guitarist Jimmy James, guitarist/vocalist Tim Mosher, bassist Todd Muscat, drummer Patrick Muzingo plus additional guitarist Brian Baker) play hard-hitting, anthemic rock ’n’ roll with catchy choruses.
Favorites include “Walk Away” (not the James Gang tune), the verse riff for “Faded,” the Stones-flavored country-rock of “Cut From The Same Cloth” and the incendiary “Wallet.”
This is hard-hitting rock n’ roll fans will love.
‘The Last Real Rock N’ Roll,’ Rhino Bucket,☆☆☆☆)
This record was produced by Supersuckers’ Eddie Spaghetti, and Rhino Bucket (singer/guitarist Georg Dolivo, bassist Reeve Downes, drummer Dave DuCey and lead guitarist Brian Forsythe) make the most of it.
This album is more AC/DC flavored than the one above, but both have more regular-voiced singers. My favorites here include the snooty “Hello Citizens,” the rowdy “Bang My Drum,” the anthemic “Last Call” and “It’s A Sin,” which doesn’t sound very regretful.
Lovers of hard rock will dig both of these recordings.
‘A Street Cat Named Bob,’ (MVDvisual,☆☆☆☆☆)
This May 9 DVD contains a film based on a 2012 best-selling book about a ginger-colored street cat who encounters James Bowen during an extremely low period of James’ life: living hand to mouth on London’s methadone program in supported accommodations.
The movie (and two books) tells the story of James’ emergence from busking and street newspaper sales into owning a home and working for charities (homeless people and animals).
The movie is extremely well-acted (Luke Treadaway as James) and Bob, who plays himself, is a charmer. Animal-film-fans will really enjoy it!
Ricky Flake, a former punk rocker and current music fan, lives in Biloxi. Reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org