Nori, Bamako Airlines, El Tule, and Schisms
Nori, Bamako Airlines, Hecho in Austin, and Schisms
Reviewed by Chase Hoffberger, Fri., Sept. 27, 2013
Soul royalty Akina Adderley crosses over to jazz and world music with her new troupe Nori, a Bob Hoffnar-assisted fivepiece whose self-titled EP carefully dances around Japanese ("Will Walk Looking Up (Sukiyaki)") and Italian bossa nova ("Chovendo Na Roseira") before circling back toward Erik Telford's horn work and the spiritual minimalism of "Liberation Song." Like an African street festival, Meera Chandy and her Bamako Airlines octet incorporates tight orchestration and interplay between big-bodied horns and quick-witted guitars on "M'barin" and "Visa Vie," highlights from an entertaining introduction to the three-year-old local crew. Certain countries pervade more than others – Mali ("Desséché"), Guinea ("Tey Gedyeleshem") – but BA's hardly relegated to one continent. Check the island vibe running through the smoothed-out "Ady," then grab a piña colada and kick back. El Tule's sound carries a smattering of that same island flair, but the eightpiece hornline's new EP is decidedly Hecho in Austin. The local troupe's third effort comes soaked in the type of "Reggae Cumbia" that goes down like a tall glass of "Topo Chico," or will at least have you shaking that tailfeather hard enough to need a fresh bottle of the stuff. The world outlier in this bunch comes via Gothic glam-rock trio the Schisms, whose self-titled debut EP journeys between the theatrical ("Meridian Motel") and treacherous ("Hound From Hell"). In actuality, the five tracks play out more like the soundtrack to a B-grade Halloween camper flick ("You Want Me"), one made creepier by a set of strange subtleties throughout, like that whistling accompaniment on "Zombie Bride."