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Hillmen | The Whiskey Mountain Sessions

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The Whiskey Mountain Sessions

by Hillmen

Recorded live-in-studio without over-dubs this highly dynamic CD features HILLMEN at their fiery best!
Genre: Jazz: Jazz Fusion
Release Date: 

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  Song Share Time Download
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1. Lights On The Bay
8:33 $0.99
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2. The Fire Burns
16:19 $0.99
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3. Patio View
9:15 $0.99
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4. Summer Days
8:54 $0.99
Downloads are available as MP3-320 files.

ABOUT THIS ALBUM


Album Notes
Formed in 2007, the instrumental group Hillmen has just released their debut CD titled The Whiskey Mountain Sessions, on Djam Karet’s new label Firepool Records. The group is composed of Peter Hillman on drums, Gayle Ellett (Djam Karet) on keyboards, Mike Murray (Djam Karet) on guitars, and Ralph Rivers on bass. Recorded live-in-studio without overdubs, this 43-minute CD features contemporary instrumental music at its dynamic best.

These four totally improvised pieces presented here are complete compositions recorded without edits, overdubs or computer manipulation. Hillmen perform in a style called Free Improvisation, in which they just tune up and play, with absolutely no predetermined structure, rhythm or key. This style features totally spontaneous creation of music, without the benefit or burden of a written score. No piece of music is ever played twice.

The goal of Hillmen is to create elastic compositions that grow, evolve, live and breathe, and change character over time. Where the composition itself becomes an organic, dynamic being. They believe that by following this path, their instrumental music can be a literal non-abstract representation of the living world. And as you listen to their music you really get the feeling that you are sitting in the room with the musicians themselves, watching as music is being created right before your ears!

Recorded in Topanga, California, the music on The Whiskey Mountain Sessions seamlessly blends the styles of Jazz, Fusion and Psychedelic music from the 1960’s and 1970’s with more modern sensibilities, creating a new hybrid style that is both traditional and contemporary. Combining the classic sounds of Hammond C-2, Rhodes piano, vintage guitars and amps, with state-of-the-art recording technology, these four instrumental compositions often begin in a hazy smoke filled room, and then evolve into a new, more clearly seen vision. Its rather like sailing out on the ocean on a foggy night, and then a majestic island slowly begins to come into view. Which is not surprising, given the fact that the album was recorded in a mountaintop studio overlooking Catalina Island and the Pacific Ocean,

All the members of Hillmen have each been playing their instruments professionally for more then 25 years each, and it shows. Recorded with a crystal clear sound, their high level of professionalism shines through in their music. Experienced enough to know when to lay back and not over play, they create music that is filled with strong grooves, beautiful melodies and some truly wailing solos.

Free Improvisation works best when a group is able to combine the unique qualities of youthful creative abandon, with a deep and mature knowledge of music and mastery of their instruments. And it is towards these goals that the members of Hillmen aspire.

Come hear for yourself the music of Hillmen.


REVIEWS of The Whiskey Mountain Sessions CD:

"The group name and album title might imply semblances of a bluegrass jam-session, but Hillmen's The Whiskey Mountain Sessions is, in fact, an improvised jazz-rock set tinted with psychedelics, featuring keyboardist Gayle Ellett and guitarist Mike Murray, of the fabled Southern California progressive rock band Djam Karet. It's an electro-organic schematic sans instrumental overlays or audio compression that effectively captures the live studio performance aesthetic.
In a loose sense, the music plots along like a pulsating dreamscape, formed by a hip, jam-band like constitution. Drummer Peter Hillman and bassists Ralph Rivers and Steve Re keep this train-a-rolling with firm pulses and an air for the dynamic, while Murray's hybrid jazz-rock, hard-rock and psycho guitar licks ride atop a deterministic rhythmic foundation. The band's improvisational output exudes an after-hours aura, as the musicians let their hair down and surge forward without boundaries or a regimented ideology.
With fire and gusto, the quartet's elongated theme-building exercises fit snugly with Murray's distortion techniques and blitzing single-note parts. On "Summer Days," the group chugs along with a fluid bottom pushing the tempo, abetted by Ellett's lower register phrasings on electric piano and Murray's spaced-out guitar lines. They pick up steam, but also move about with an unhurried line of attack as they abide by a congenial flow, and let the chips fall where they may, attaining a balanced approach that is sometimes uncommon within jam-based methodologies.
It's a no frills affair and less technical in scope than the archetypal Djam Karet album, but the artists radiate an upbeat vibe along the way, sparked by enthusiasm and an affable posture that helps facilitate the gratifying results."
ALL ABOUT JAZZ (USA)

"This is the 1st official studio album by Hillmen, achieving a 43-minute CD of instrumental music at its best. To record an album of this type requires extremely experienced musicians, each one able to fly through his instrument, but also creating a musical ensemble sound. The result is cutting edge jazz. But not all who venture to record in this style are as capable of creating such dynamic and progressive music. As their record label says: free improvisation works best when a group is capable of combining the unique qualities of its members, with a deep knowledge of music and mastery of their instruments.
An excellent acquisition."
9 out of 10
MANTICORNIO (Mexico)

"Hillmen were founded in 2007. Consisting of four musicians on bass, drums, guitar and keyboards, including two from the well-known group Djam Karet, they have devoted themselves to instrumental jam rock. The four pieces on the debut album were recorded live in the studio without overdubs. The music builds up slowly and is often performed on the same chord, slowly building up to ecstasy. The sound reminds me slightly of early Pink Floyd during their psychedelic phase. However, here elements of Jazz and Fusion can be found. Hillmen have their own sound and go their own way, but the spirit of the late Sixties, early Seventies, is everywhere. For fans of jam rock this is an interesting acquisition.”
3 1/2 stars out of 4
PROGGIES (Switzerland)

“The four members of Hillmen are all very experienced musicians. The most important musical setting for Hillmen is Free Improvisation, where nothing is planned, not even the rhythm. They like to play carefree and see where the road leads. You might expect anarchy with no pre-written score, but instead, we get solid jazz-rock rhythms provided by the drummer, dictating the music of the quartet with a very flowing style drifting between loose, jazzy fusion and rock jams. These improvisations are of the most intimate jazz jams, while also moving through increasingly rocky passages with fiery guitar solos. It should be noted that the album a crystal clear and vibrant sound.
Those who like flowing jazz-rock jams will enjoy listening to "The Whiskey Mountain Sessions".
BABYBLAUE (Germany)

"The sound might be familiar to fans of Djam Karet. Technically wonderful instrumental music that can transfix even the non-committed music fan. The group has been on the go since 2007 and has Pete Hillmen on drums, Gayle Ellett on organ & electric piano, Mike Murray on guitars and Ralph Rivers on bass. Ellett and Murray are part of Djam Karet, hence the comparison.
Here are four totally improvised pieces of music recorded live in the studio without overdubs. How many musicians can you say that about today? Most can't even sing or perform live!
This jazz-rock-fusion is of high quality, but if it is words that you deem essential Hillmen will not be for you. As it happens words are not so important to myself so thumbs up from me."
CLASSIC ROCK SOCIETY (England)

"Fellow band mates (Djam Karet) Gayle Ellett and Mike Murray take their side project in an entirely different direction, abandoning the adventurous progressive rock sound associated with Djam Karet in favor of jazz fusion, and a Psychedelic rock sound associated with the San Francisco bands of the 60s' and 70s' who frequented Bill Graham's Filmore East & West.
These four improvisational tracks have more in common with bands like The Grateful Dead, Santana, Quicksilver Messenger Service, The Alman Brothers, and The Flying Burrito Brothers than Djam Karet - or any progressive rock band for that matter.
Free Improvisation can be a suicidal endeavor for the uninitiated. But talented musicians like Peter Hillman (drums), Gayle Ellett (Hammond C-2 organ and Fender Rhodes electric piano), Mike Murray (vintage guitars and amps), Ralph Rivers (bass), Steve Re (bass) and Brian Carter (acoustic piano) who make up Hillmen react as a symbiotic Borg-like mind collective, each member intuitively anticipating and reacting to structural changes in mood and texture in a seamless transition. Less talented bands can find themselves quickly painted into a corner with no means of escape if one members abruptly shift gears leaving his hapless band mates to slog through the cacophony of chaos. But decades of camaraderie and musical compatibility between Ellett and Murray has Hillmen performing like a well oiled machine.
Fans of Santana, The Grateful Dead, and the Psychedelic music of 60s' and 70s' should find this to their liking."
PROGNAUT (USA)

“The Whiskey Mountain Sessions contains four lengthy jams that explore downtempo jazz-rock with psychedelic overtones in Lights On The Bay (highlighted by a captivating solo of space guitar) and exuberant propulsive Latin-tinged dance-rock in Summer Days. Both the psychedelic and the Latin accents permeate the 16-minute The Fire Burns, reminiscent of countless instrumental fusion styles of the 1970s to the point of sounding like an elegant and erudite synthesis or tribute of sorts to the post-Miles Davis age.”
SCARUFFI (USA)

"So, this is just a case of turn up, tune up, and play, is it? Free improvisation, the goal being to make elastic compositions that change over time – that’s how they explain their music in the liner notes, so, who am I to argue? Maybe I’m just an old guy who can hear a little bit of King Crimson in here, along with some Brian Auger / Santana organ, and percussive sounds that rain down like Bill Bruford is playing on 'Roundabout' and 'Close To The Edge'. Well, old guy or not, I can hear these things, and for me they’re all to the great and good. If this is 'improv' then count me in - I love it. Astonishing, circling melodies swirled as they are by pointed guitar phrases, the whirling organ grooves and blasts, the rhythmic drums underpinning it all, and the bass providing the traction as each tune continues to grow.
Four tracks in all, none shorter than eight and a half minutes in length, varying in tempo and melody, and all wonderfully accessible. I'm not sure which drawer you put this music in, as these tunes are part jazz (think E.S.T. but guitar led, rather than piano... that’s as close as I can nail the jazz element here), part post-rock, part progressive, but developed into a complete sound. Despite all this mixing of musical genres, or maybe because of it, this is a clear and vibrant work, and I know that this is an album that I’ll return to repeatedly."
LEICESTERBANGS (England)

"Fellow band mates (Djam Karet) Gayle Ellett and Mike Murray take their side project in an entirely different direction, abandoning the adventurous progressive rock sound associated with Djam Karet in favor of jazz fusion, and a Psychedelic rock sound associated with the San Francisco bands of the 60s' and 70s' who frequented Bill Graham's Filmore East & West.
These four improvisational tracks have more in common with bands like The Grateful Dead, Santana, Quicksilver Messenger Service, The Alman Brothers, and The Flying Burrito Brothers than Djam Karet - or any progressive rock band for that matter.
Free Improvisation can be a suicidal endeavor for the uninitiated. But talented musicians like Peter Hillman (drums), Gayle Ellett (Hammond C-2 organ and Fender Rhodes electric piano), Mike Murray (vintage guitars and amps), Ralph Rivers (bass), Steve Re (bass) and Brian Carter (acoustic piano) who make up Hillmen react as a symbiotic Borg-like mind collective, each member intuitively anticipating and reacting to structural changes in mood and texture in a seamless transition. Less talented bands can find themselves quickly painted into a corner with no means of escape if one members abruptly shift gears leaving his hapless band mates to slog through the cacophony of chaos. But decades of camaraderie and musical compatibility between Ellett and Murray has Hillmen performing like a well oiled machine.
Fans of Santana, The Grateful Dead, and the Psychedelic music of 60s' and 70s' should find this to their liking."
PROGNAUT (USA)

“Djam Karet, like many bands, have started their own record label, which they have called Firepool Records and we have reviewed their previous releases before in these pages.
This time we have the instrumental quartet Hillmen who has 50% of the musicians mentioned before from Djam Karet. The heroes on this album are the super-talented Gayle Ellett on organ and electric piano and Mike Murray on guitar. The album is about fourty minutes, and incidentally was recorded live in the studio without overdubs, and has thus obtained an authenticity that we really like. The band started in 2007 and "The Whiskey Mountain Sessions” is their debut album, and a best guess is that the band name comes from the drummer Peter Hillman. The album consists of four improvised songs and the sound quality has a freshness that is infectious. Their goal is to create compositions that evolve and grow and are lively, with plenty of substance, and the result is organic and dynamic. Hillmen have a desire for hearing their CD to be like sitting in the room with the band themselves, while the music is being created right before your ears! These are big and bold visions indeed, Big Hairy Goals (BHG), and clearly the Hillmen have been quite successful at swimming ahead towards these goals and achieving their BHG.
The album was recorded in Topanga, California, and is a blending of psychedelic music from the 1960s and 1970s, jazz and fusion, creating a new hybrid style that is both traditional and contemporary. Their music is quite accessible (unlike their parent band Djam Karet) and they have more in common with bands like The Flying Burrito Brothers and Quicksilver Messenger Service. Yet their music is based on improvisation and a willingness to experiment. This could easily lead to incomprehensible music for the non-initiated listener (and even for the initiated), and if it is not done well can be horrible to hear. But this is not the case with Hillmen. On the contrary, they have created interesting and satisfying music, and this is because the collective Hillmen are so cohesive and aligned as musicians and have an intuitive reflexive quality where musical structural changes are easily captured. Therefore the mood and textural changes are more focused then cacophonous, and we find this very impressive. Better examples of musical ensemble-interaction than Hillmen, are hard to find. The band also shows that musical talent is not something that should be glossed over. Their music is in stark contrast to a market-driven legion of musical garbage that dominates the commercial market. We find the album to have a lot of good qualities while maintaining its edge. But we are not sure if it will appeal to mainstream music fans. Also one needs to come to grips with the fact that the album requires a fairly intense and deliberate listening. Fortunately, even then, the music does not seem repetitive or stagnant. We think it is an interesting and worthy album, and that "The Whiskey Mountain Sessions" is an album that we will continue to visit and listen to often.”
MERLINPROG (Norway)

"Here is an album that we didn't expect. We know the world of Djam Karet, and their art of improvisation developed by the Californian band in thirty years of activity, the unpredictable behaviour of Gayle Ellett and his associates in the face of the possibilities offered by the jam. However, the Hillmen project has something more. They have the "astonishment" factor. In the past, with the group Djam Karet-and as individual members in their respective solo projects - they have fused progressive and psychedelic, ambient and folk-rock and world music, but switching to jazz was still missing.
With the group Hillmen, Ellett plays the Hammond organ and electric piano, Mike Murray remains on guitars and the drums are played by Peter Hillman: the goal is to revive the atmospheres and sensations of the 1960's, based on the organ trio/soul jazz style, but also with references to the first appearances of electric jazz. Between Miles Davis' "In A Silent Way", Soft Machine's fourth album, and the concentric and seminal experiments of such composers as Gary Burton, Larry Coryell and Graham Bond, the Hillmen have created four pieces of instrumental music-like taking a long road trip to the past-while working in their studio in Topanga.
With no predetermined score, this is Free Improvisation at its best and it comes without the burden of written music, as heard on "Summer Days". It would have been easier to conceive of a work of homage to the past, but the Hillmen instead take their inspiration from that dimension and space so dear to Miles of the late Sixties, and rework it in their own way, in light of their own personalities, as in "The Fire Burns", whose sensual but determined style reminds one of those long warm nights in San Francisco with Santana and the Grateful Dead."
MOVIMENTIPROG (Italy)

"This improv music applies a modern approach to cafe style jazz. The first track captures a relaxed tension with droney organ, slow jazz percussion, meandering slide guitar blending with guitar effects, and gentle basslines. The tune flows without any pinnacle, pursuing a languid course replete with the inventive interaction of the instruments.
The next piece (the longest on the album at sixteen minutes) continues to delve into a laid-back jazz motif. Each instrument delivers a soothing dose of fluid resonance backed by subdued but steadfast drums. The keyboards slide out tasty chords in a retro fashion, while the bass provides a thumping undercurrent. As the song progresses, the guitar escalates from restrained noodling to some blazing riffs. The interplay between the keys and the guitar establishes an enticing nucleus that gradually builds to a satisfying crescendo.
The following track injects a certain urgency to the album, as the guitar adopts a more pronounced presence and delivers some delicious jamming. Here, the rest of the instruments strive to support without overwhelming things. The keys possess an appealing twinkle.
With the last piece the music gets a little more energetic. Fingers dance across the keys, generating sparkling melodies. The guitar gets funky, and the enlivened percussion provides a bouncy set of rhythms.
While no instrument dominates this tuneage, the slippery keyboards evoke a classic fusion mood that is counterbalanced by the old school influence of the drums as they maintain constant rhythms that are well defined yet unobtrusive. The rambling guitar (with occasions of lead riffs) nicely links the past and present of improv jazz."
SONICCURIOSITY (USA)

"The CD consists of four tracks in the 8-16 minute range and is all instrumental and all improvised.
Lights On The Bay opens the set with a jazz groove, guitar and organ jamming away. The music has a nice 70s vibe and the old time organ sound really shines. The promo sheet notes that the Hillmen use Hammond C-2, Rhodes piano, and vintage guitars and amps, which of course adds to the 70s sound. Later in the tune the guitar takes on a spaced out ethereal quality that adds a Kosmiche feel to the music. The Fire Burns is next and I liked this one right away with its swingin’ jazz vibe that inspires the body to move. I really like the guitar and organ jamming together, and piano by guest Brian Carter is prominent as well. While listening I envisioned myself wandering into some dark smoky lounge, sitting at a little table in the corner, ordering a whiskey (with just a splash of soda), and grooving along with these guys for as long as they care to play. Things groove along for a while and then around the 10 minute mark the band explode into a heavy driving jazz-rock fusion jam. Lots of cool sounds and effects add to the color and atmosphere of this piece. Patio View has a sassy Bluesy jazz vibe, but it rocks hard with the guitar cranking out ripping solos and venturing into Hendrix territory. Summer Days brings the set to a close and on this tune Hillmen inject a heavy dose of hip-shaking swing into the music.
Quite an enjoyable set. This is improv jazz from an earlier time, when jazz musicians were aware of rock music and psychedelia, and rock and psychedelic musicians were aware of jazz. Fans of the Bay area band Mushroom will dig this, as will anyone who (like me) is fascinated by the many talents and interests of the Djam Karet folks."
AURAL-INNOVATIONS (USA)

"Formed in 2007, Hillmen are a California-based instrumental quartet featuring the considerable talents of Djam Karet members Gayle Ellett (keyboards) and Mike Murray (guitar), as well as drummer Peter Hillman and bassist Ralph Rivers (who appears on the first two tracks). The Whiskey Mountain Session, their debut album, is also the second released by Djam Karet's own label, Firepool Records, whose inaugural release was Herd Of Instinct superb self-titled debut in the late spring of 2011.
As an almost perfect foil to Henderson/Oken's 76-minute Dream Theory In The IE (which was released at the same time), The Whiskey Mountain Session runs at a mere 43 minutes, and comprises only four tracks. Even if the title might suggest bluegrass or Southern rock, the album blends classic jazz-fusion with psychedelia and heady Latin and other ethnic overtones. Like The Heavy Soul Sessions, Djam Karet's latest release to date, the album was recorded live in the studio, without any edits or overdubs, preserving the spontaneity of the interaction between the musicians and the flexible nature of the compositions - which, according to the liner notes, "grow, evolve, live and breathe". This free-improvisation context lends an appealingly loose texture to the music, though without detracting from the artists' impressive technical proficiency.
Recorded in a mountaintop studio overlooking the Pacific Ocean, The Whiskey Mountain Session combines the warm, engaging sound of vintage instruments such as the Hammond organ and the electric piano with the resources of modern technology. With its laid-back pace and easy, natural flow, the music is strikingly effective in evoking the beauty of the surroundings in which the album was created - though at the same time it may suggest the dim, smoky interior of an old-time jazz club, or also the mellow, informal atmosphere of an open-air festival. The recording emphasizes the unstaged nature of the sessions, avoiding the artificially polished quality of so many modern products.
From the faint sounds that introduce opener Lights On The Bay, it is easy to visualize the band coming in and tuning up their instruments, then settling down to play. Over a background of understated drums, the guitar emerges discreetly, supported by equally muted keyboards and bass - then gradually takes the lead, while the organ and other sounds flesh out the rather sparse fabric of the composition. Opening in similarly subdued fashion, the 16-minute The Fire Burns takes the listener into vintage Santana territory with the riveting interplay of organ, piano and guitar underpinned by the discreet but unmistakable twang of the bass and the tireless work of the drums. The lazy, bluesy saunter and slow-burning guitar and and piano in Patio View conjure echoes of Traffic in their heyday; while Summer Days reprises the warm Latin feel of the piano and guitar with a brisker, more energetic step. While the differences between the individual tracks may not be as evident as in more conventionally structured albums, there is enough variation to avoid monotonousness, as well as a pervasive sense of melody that makes listening quite an enjoyable experience.
Being heavily based on free improvisation with no predetermined structure, The Whiskey Mountain Sessions may have limited appeal for those who like the more disciplined approach of traditional prog, and find jam-band music somewhat repetitive. However, the sheer quality of the performances and the intriguingly descriptive nature of the music make this album a worthwhile proposition for fans of jazz-fusion and traditional jazz, as well as open-minded music lovers."
Conclusion: 8 out of 10
DPRP (The Netherlands)

"The drummer Peter Hillman formed the quartet Hillmen, who play a style of music on their debut album, The Whiskey Mountain Sessions, called Free Improvisation. That the four pieces do not degenerate into long unappealing freakiness, is partly because the drummer chose to work with Gayle Ellett and Mike Murray, two members of Djam Karet. This legendary band knows how to keep improvisations fascinating, as on the Djam Karet album Still No Commercial Potential, that has a similar structure as Pink Floyd's Live At Pompeii. From the first notes of Lights On The Bay you can feel the musicians each interacting fluidly. The groove is rapidly propelled by Peter Hillman and bassist Ralph Rivers, and soon Ellett's organ and electric piano and Murrays guitars arrive. But even within this setting, there is room for atmospheric moments with gently undulating Hammond chords and floating guitar fragments. The sixteen minute long The Fire Burns has a floating psychedelic quality, sounding like the old works of Rick Wright and Santana. During the recording of this track guest musician Brian Carter slid behind the acoustic piano providing classical and bluesy accents, which leads to a brooding, uplifting climax. The title of the subsequent jazz rocker Patio View is undoubtedly inspired by the view from their Sea View Studios of the Pacific Ocean and Catalina Island, a quality that permeates the entire album. With the final song Summer Days finally there is more of a spicy, swinging fusion quality, where you can hardly imagine that this is purely improvised music. These sessions have produced an excellent album that shows us that improvisation and a catchy melody can indeed go together."
IOPages (The Netherlands)


"And again here is another album out of the improvisational musical world of Djam Karet. There are four pieces of music, with a total time of 43 minutes, which has abandoned the typical song format, in favor of improvisation, and it is this approach that the instrumental quartet Hillmen have chosen to follow.
The band, founded in 2007, include two musicians from Djam Karet: Gayle Ellett and Mike Murray, who are playing improvised music (as are their bandmates in the previously reviewed Henderson/Oken album). The compositions here were created spontaneously and without any post-production or overdubs. These are unique pieces of music that were never
meant to be played twice, and yet it has a completely free and organic quality. One gets the impression that you are in attendance as a listener to the actual musical creative process, which instantly appears before you as incredibly exciting and grippingly creative music, although on occasion the music is a bit foggy and atmospheric.
"The Whiskey Mountain Sessions" exists somewhere in the border land between jazz rock, jam rock and free improvisation. This is music that is created in the moment and is overflowing with creative energy."
PROGRESSIVENEWSLETTER (Germany)


"Free improvisation". The Hillmen are clear in their liner notes. Their music is free improvisation. And the four compositions on this CD were recorded without any overdubs, during sessions where the musicians just show up and start playing. Freely. Without any predetermined plan. Without any structure already outlined. And the free flow of notes and rhythms can be felt in full, on these forty-three minutes of music. The experimental spirit is directed towards a progressive jazz-rock style, electric and expressive, characterized by a clear sound, and the drums, bass, guitar, organ and electric piano all interact naturally, with a certain attitude similar to the Miles Davis album "Bitches Brew", where he brought together an explosive combination of two genres that until then seemed to be at opposites ends of the spectrum.
The improvisation of the Hillmen, however, never goes too far towards jazz, or over the edge, or into pure technical exhibitionism. It is a constantly evolving sound that we hear. Enveloping melodies, bright instrumental interplay, with bass and drums who can easily accelerate, slow down, change rhythms, or even keep obsessively the same time signature for a little while. And with their improvisational nature, and a strong sense of freedom, and their approach to fusion, however, it does not keep them from loosing sight of that feeling. And so their music is never extreme, sometimes with a nod toward rock bands of the late 60s and early 70s and artists like Santana and Traffic and they really know how to let go with some very fiery solos. Not to mention a vaguely Pink Floydian sound (particularly at the beginning of the third track "Patio view") that leans towards psychedelia. Their roots are in the past, but they look forward into today: classic sounds are modernized, with a clean production, and an ensemble-style that despite the historical influences sounds contemporary.
The main characters? The names of Gayle Ellett and Mike Murray should already tell you something, because they are, respectively, the keyboardist and guitarist for Djam Karet, a band that has for many years been conducting a very personal approach to music, with a sound that is much loved, and their willingness to always take risks and experiment. Completing the Hillmen line-up we then find the drummer Peter Hillman and bassist Ralph Rivers, replaced on the final two songs by Steve Re. The four musicians met in Topanga, California, and started playing their music, and "The Whiskey Mountain Sessions" (released for the Firepool Records, the new label Djam Karet) is the final result, with its jazz-rock vibe, along with its power and engaging spontaneity. All who really listen with attention will be captivated by their music."
ARLEQUINS (Italy)

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