Some of you may
remember a band called Sweep The Leg Johnny. Fronted by a sax
player, yet a math-rock band by definition, their career was marked
by a trail of dynamic and progressive albums that still hold their
own today. Certainly, Sweep the Leg Johnny wasn't the only band to
mesh rock music with the odd jazzy time signature, nor are
Bananafish among a particularly select few to fuse jazz with
instrumental rock. But they do it well.
Compared to Sweep the Leg Johnny, this sextet is far more jazz-oriented, culling
significant influence from
the fusion-heavy progressive rock of the seventies. Their
compositions are entirely instrumental yet remarkably infectious,
something that's most evident on anthemic "Starquasia," which the
band paints mellow by way of twinkly guitar chords and smooth horns.
Opener "Shady Lane," which has little in common with the homonymous
Pavement song, is a more rock-heavy performance -
reverberating guitar solos and sax melodies are layered over a
wiggly groove to saucy effect. Closing track "Osteoferocious" is
also worthy of mention, with its breezy alto sax flourishes
providing a wistful prettiness to the piece.
performers are a talented bunch, and these infectious compositions
are undoubtedly the work of many a loose-ended jam session. Well
recorded and well executed, this EP is an impressive step forward
for this young band. The next challenge will be the debut album.