John Palumbo

John Palumbo

John Palumbo

Hollywood Blvd

Carry On Music

Sometimes it feels like all rock and rollers end up being frustrated jazz musicians. John Palumbo fronted Crack the Sky though all its various incarnations, starting in Weirton WV and ending up in Hollywood. The band had its ups and downs, and frankly I lost track of it in the 1980’s when the worlds went New Wave. But Palumbo’s band soldiered on for almost 30 albums, and I caught up with the band with their last album Lost Boys. This collection of tunes presents a more mystical, somewhat less threatening face that doesn’t light your fire so much as it chills your blood. Spooky sounds of a lonely trumpet and drums fill “Turn.” It’s fast, polyrhythmic and builds a foundation for a lone female vocalist scatting in the distance. In “Nothing to Lose” we return to a more rock based structure, albeit one fabricated with a steel guitar. But the eclectic is classic country number “Nothing to Lose” places electric guitars squarely in front of that wall of sound backing track. “For Turyia” returns to the slow, smokey jazz riffs of a late night bar filled with loneliness and loss. Lastly, I’ll mention “In A Cold World” with this pensive, Beatles influenced cry of hope: “We need love in a cold world.” Hard to argue that point. Mr. Palumbo’s latest effort is a skillful tour though many of the genres that we construct our musical culture upon. Palumbo’s not here to tear off a roof or burn down a dynasty, he’s heard to preach calm and tolerance. I wish him luck.

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