Mervin Malone
This is a place — a BLOG, if you will — about music, film, culture, the arts and whatever else co-exists and generates popular culture. Enjoy!

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Friday, May 19, 2006
Ivan's Den...

One of Aria's own contributors — Ivan Diller — has recently started his own blog, which is approriately titled Ivan's Den. It was bound to happen — Ivan's skills and experience as a writer — which are considerable — are too great to be confined to just one outlet. Indeed, Ivan contributed two of the finest Q & A features to Aria I could've asked for (those being Frankie Knuckles and Doug Lazy) — expertly researched and reported. Thankfully, Ivan isn't departing Aria altogether and will continue to contribute here whenever his time permits, of which I (and my readers) are glad.

You can check out Ivan's Den at www.ivansden.blogspot.com/. Also, please visit Ivan at www.myspace.com/idiller.


Posted at 01:49 pm by Mervin Malone
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Sunday, May 14, 2006
Review: Amel Larrieux Morning

Singer/songwriter Amel Larrieux returns with another winning collection of jazzy and spiritually affecting songs. The third release from the artsy songbird, Morning continues Larrieux's spontaneous impulses. As devoted fans of Amel Larrieux can attest to (based largely on her previous full-lengths, Infinite Possibilities and Bravebird) she is like the proverbial bolt of lightning – she never strikes twice in the same place. Sure, there are certain ever-present characteristics to Larrieux's music: hypnotic vocals; complex (but accessible) songwriting; jazzy sonic textures; brilliant multi-tracking technics — it's Larrieux's approach album-making that sets her above her peers (which are rarely on par with her aesthetically). Morning continues Larrieux's brilliant track record.

The album opens with the uptempo "Trouble", followed by the deep, loungy "Unanswered Question". The atmospheric vibe continues thoughout with songs like "Gills and Tails", "Earn My Affections" and "Mountain of When". A diverse album, Morning offsets uptempo jazz tunes  like  "Weary" and "Magic" with ambient soul tracks like "No One Else" and the title track. Morning is a definite must for fans of soul, progressive soul, experimental jazz and nu jazz.


Posted at 04:29 pm by Mervin Malone
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