Rastus — Steamin'
(Neighborhood NRS-47003, 1972, LP)
by Mike McLatchey, Published 2018-09-13
Like Genesis and Tangerine Dream, Chicago (Transit Authority) and Blood Sweat and Tears also had a lot of bands heavily inspired by them and Rastus took strongly from the former with a touch from the latter. I believe Steamin’ is the band's third and last album and the only one to make it to CD so far (like Chicago Transit Authority, the debut self-titled Rastus was a double). Rastus had a horn section and a similar mix of rock, blues, and jazz, although it seems like their most commercial songs end up as bonus tracks here. The band's nice and tight and the vocals even seem to sound like it's Lamm, Kath, and Cetera sharing the vocals at times. Honestly maybe the only differences between the two bands were Rastus were from Cleveland and they didn't have enough of a their own personality to make it to the big time. But if you like the style, as I very much do, it's a cool release.
Related artist(s): Rastus
Jazz Composer Mark Lomax, II Releases Epic 12CD Set – In addition to being a fine jazz drummer, Dr. Mark Lomax, II is a composer in residence at Ohio State University, where he has been very busy on the compositional front. The year 2019 is the 400th anniversary of the arrival of the first ship bringing African slaves to North America, and in commemoration of this, Lomax has produced 400: An Afrikan Epic, a 12 volume set of CDs featuring a variety of different musical ensembles. » Read more
Chicago-Based Surabhi Ensemble Tours the World in January – Surabhi Ensemble was formed more than a decade ago in Chicago with the aim of bringing together musicians from varying traditions to make music. Saraswathi Ranganathan, who plays veena, assembled a cast that includes Arabic oud, Spanish guitar, and percussion from Africa and India. This month, the group will be sharing their sounds with concert-goers in Southeast Asia, Europe, and Africa. » Read more
Seaprog Festival Seeks Donations – Seaprog is a small festival in Seattle that highlights creative music from many genres with artists from around the world. It's also a US non-profit organization. They're seeking donations to help keep the ball rolling. Starting in 2013, the organization has been growing, and has featured such artists as Free Salamander Exhibit, Jack o' the Clock, Nik Turner, Cabezas de Cera, Miriodor, Thinking Plague, and many more. » Read more
The Seventeenth Dream of Dr Sardonicus Festival Tickets Now Available – Fruits de Mer Records and their merry crew of psychedelic explorers are getting set to present the next The Seventeenth Dream of Dr. Sardonicus Festival. The dates are set for August 2-4, 2019 at The Cellar Bar in Cardigan, Wales. They've also announced that the legendary Groundhogs will top the bill. » Read more
Charles O'Meara (C.W. Vrtacek) RIP – A true musical original has left us. Charles O'Meara, who recorded under the name C.W. Vrtacek, was a wild-card musical talent, ranging from complex progressive rock to introspective modern compositions, with stops at many places inbetween. » Read more