Alibi V.19 No.5 • Feb 4-10, 2010 

Sonic Reducer

Jason Lindner Now Vs Now (Anzic Records)

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As musical as he is adventurous, keyboardist/composer/arranger Jason Lindner earned well-deserved plaudits for his big band project. With Now Vs Now, he turns his fertile imagination toward creating a startlingly fresh sound from worldly jazz smarts, with the Balkan-flavored bass of Panagiotis Andreou and the rock-inflected drums of Mark Guiliana in his trio. Throw in Meshell Ndegeocello as producer and guest appearances from hip-hop artist Baba Israel, guitarist Kurt Rosenwinkel, Avishai and Anat Cohen on trumpet and sax, and vocalist Claudia Acuña, among others, and you’ve got a world of influences that blend and morph effortlessly in Lindner’s hands. The trio delivers a rich and varied musicality that could grace a concert stage and a rhythmic sensibility and thump more at home in a dance club. (MM)

Hot Chip One Life Stand (Astralwerks)

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It seems Hot Chip has cooled down a bit. On its latest release, the five-piece British electro-pop outfit steps away from synth-heavy dance music and moves in closer to mid-tempo ambient rock. Fist-pounding electronic anthems like 2008’s “Ready for the Floor” are gone, replaced by more subdued, coherent concoctions like “I Feel Better” and “Hand Me Down Your Love.” While 2008’s Made in the Dark was intentionally all over the place—from disco beats to drawn-out love ballads—One Life Stand’s biggest strength is its overall consistency. Lead singer Alexis Taylor’s voice is laterally perfect throughout the 10 tracks and well-suited for lyrics touching on the transformational power of love. One Life Stand may not be Hot Chip’s masterpiece, but it reveals a maturity in the band’s musical abilities. (KE)

(MM) Mel Minter, (KE) Kyle Eustice