Best-of ’10:: Minotaurs The Thing

For long time percussionist Nathan Lawr, the decision to experiment with afrobeat rhythms isn’t that surprising, but the innovative way he and his all-star band fuse indie rock into the political charged African sounds certainly is. In a time where artists have picked the traditional sounds of the Mother Land - no Kish, not Japan in this case - as dry as the soil, Lawr’s journey never finds him losing his own, unique voice or resorting to upheaval and forced calls to action.

 

The Thing succeeds because Lawr and his band - featuring current and former members of The Rheostatics, Holy Fuck, and Feuermusik - understand and appreciate influence but never rely on it. Rumbling horns, plucked bass lines and drums fuse into slinky, explosive grooves but more straightforward tracks like “Lazy Eye” or the dark and brooding “Crystal Cave” could have fit seamlessly into Lawr’s last (and fantastic) record and ground the affair firmly on Canadian soil.

 

Truth be told, the record hits it’s highest points when Minotaurs incorporate both sounds. While “Caught in the Light” and “Get Down” could win over the crowd at any jazz festival, the band really hits their stride when Jeremy Strachan’s spirited horn arrangements explode from the speakers and transform “Runaway Lane” and the title track - songs tailor made for audiences with enough beards to rival a playoff locker room - into groove laden efforts. Seriously, it’s almost impossible to find records that don’t just sound like someone else, but the way Minotaurs experiments with funk, afrobeat, jazz and good ole fashioned indie rock certainly smashes any preconceived notions you have about sampling from African sounds and leaves the joint smoking. A must hear.

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

MP3:: Minotaurs - Caught in the Light
WEB:: http://www.myspace.com/nathanlawr

Tweet

 

Tags: , Nathan Lawr

This entry was posted on Monday, October 18th, 2010 at 8:28 am and is filed under 2010, Best-of '10, Canada, Music, Reviews. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed.

You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

One Response to “Best-of ’10:: Minotaurs The Thing”

mike October 20th, 2010 at 3:29 pm

Posted tracks sounds great. Good review.

Leave a Reply