Alison Faith Levy & Mushroom — Yesterday I Saw You Kissing Tiny Flowers
(4Zero FZ003, 2007, CD)
by Peter Thelen, Published 2008-01-01
For this limited edition release on the British 4Zero label, San Francisco Bay Area improv-trippers Mushroom have joined forces with the soulful and seductive voice of singer Alison Faith Levy. It’s a match made in heaven, as Levy fits right into the Mushroom ethos, a spirited jazz-meets-groove improvisational attack heavily informed by the more progressive rock styles of the late 60s and early 70s. Seven of the eight tracks are Mushroom originals with Levy contributing the lyrics, mostly mid-length pieces, although “Josh Pollock” (handily named for the University of Errors guitarist who was a member of the band at that time) clocks in at 11 minutes, and “Kraut Mask Replica” at 23 minutes both offer plenty of room for the players and vocalist to stretch out. The material here was recorded in various studio and live settings over the last five years (about 50/50 live and studio), with various incarnations of Mushroom – whose lineup seems to change for nearly every recording. As such, it varies somewhat in recording quality, though most of the eight pieces sound great (the only cover, of Bowie’s “The Sun Machine Is Coming Down and We’re Gonna Have a Party” is the most bootleggy, and has rightfully been placed at the very end like a bonus track). Levy adds a lot to Mushroom’s mix, and one can only hope that they will collaborate more in the future.
Ennio Morricone RIP – Famed composer Ennio Morricone has died at the age of 91. The creator of scores for more than 500 movies, some of his works have become the most recognizable sounds in the history of cinema. His soundtracks for Sergio Leone's Westerns made from 1964 to 1971, are iconic landmarks in film music, but he also composed for dramas, comedies, and other genres. He won the Academy Award for Best Original Score in 2016 for The Hateful Eight. » Read more
Keith Tippett RIP – One of the giants of British jazz has left us. Keith Graham Tippetts, known professionally as Keith Tippett, died today at the age of 72. His work from the late 60s into the 70s and beyond includes some of the greatest jazz produced in the UK, and stands as an impressive oevre to this day. » Read more
Phil May of The Pretty Things RIP – We were saddened to learn that Phil May, lead singer and founding member of The Pretty Things, has died at the age of 75. The band's 1968 album S.F. Sorrow is one of the enduring classics of the psychedelic era, and the group existed in various forms until finally retiring in 2018. » Read more
Jorge Santana RIP – Jorge Santana, noted guitarist, leader of the band Malo and brother to Carlos Santana, died on May 14 at the age of 68. Jorge and Carlos worked together on a number of occasions, though Jorge's career was centered around Malo, solo work, and with Fania All-Stars. » Read more