ATOMIC
The Magazine Articles Reviews The Bar ATOMIC Girls Gallery Venues Bands Retro Radio Forums Shopping
   


eBay


History Channel.com

Big-T & the Bada-Bings

 
 

Indigo Swing
Red Light

Indigo Swing has a reverential following on the swing scene, and their latest offering, Red Light shows the devotion of their fans is well-deserved. The CD's sound is spare, in the very best sense. The use of silence and space is a sign of maturity and gives breathing room for each note to have greater impact. The airy quality and the simplicity of the album's production also provide an ideal backdrop for bandleader Johnny Boyd's smooth, honest voice, which is simply mesmerizing.

The other musicians are equally on the mark. Baron Shul shows he is at home with both a rough honk or a soupy glide on the sax, and Josh Workman's guitar licks alternately burn and smolder. Big Jim Overton on drums and Vance Ehlers on bass handle the straight swing of most of the tunes every bit as well as the cajun tinge of "They Say I Must Be Crazy" or the tribal rhythms of "Don't Worry So Much." And William Beatty's piano playing is simply killer throughout, from the tireless rolls on the title track to the his inferno of a showcase, "Hot Pot Boogie." All masters of versatility, the members of Indigo Swing have the enviable ability to walk the line between sophistication and silliness, without ever stumbling over it.

The performances alone are enough to justify buying this CD, but what puts this Bay Area-combo head and shoulders above other neo-swing ensembles is the range and strength of the songwriting. From the rocking "Pop's at the Hop" to the country-style ballad "So Far Away from Me," Boyd's most nakedly emotional performance, the lyrics and melodies reflect the talents of master craftsmen.

The pearl on the new album is "Ruby Mae." This delta fable of a trainman adopting a little girl who grows up with a gift for music transports the listener to another place the way very few songs ever can. The stunning lyrics, lazy shuffle, and eerie vocals soaring over the groove like a muted trumpet will coax you in with sweetness then leave you blindsided with content.

With earnestness, polish, humor, danceability, and the occasional flash of greatness, Red Light is a go on all fronts.

- Chris Orbach



Year 1999 Reviews
Year 2000 Reviews
Year 2001 Reviews
Year 2002 Reviews
Year 2003 Reviews
Bellevue Cadillac—Prozac Nation
Big Kahuna—Hawaiian Swing
Big Rude Jake—Big Rude Jake
Big Tubba Mista—Knock One Back
Bill Elliott Swing Orchestra—
Swingin' The Century
Bim Bam Baby—Who Am I Gonna Love
Black Jacket Racket—Volume II
Blue Saracens—What's A Saracen?
The Camaros—Evil
Casey MacGill & The Spirits of Rhythm—Jump
The Delegates—Delegatin'
George Gee & His Make Believe Ballroom Orchestra—Swingin' Live
Got Swing?—Volume I
The Music of Harry Warren—
Swing! Here and Now
House of Blues Swings!
Indigo Swing—Red Light
Jet Set Six—Livin' It Up
Lisa Stansfield—Swing: The Movie
Mob Hits—Volume I
Mora's Modern Rhythmists—
Mr. Rhythmist Goes To Town
Ray Gelato Giants—The Men From Uncle
Rockabilly Hall of Fame—
VolumesI & II
Royal Crown Revue—Walk on Fire
The Yalloppin' Hounds—
Ghetto Swing Extreme
  Retro Film Reviews
Swing!: The Movie
  Retro Reading Reviews
The Swing Book—Degen Pener
Musichound's Swing!; The Essential Music Guide
   

 

 

 


1999-2009 ATOMIC Magazine, Inc.
ATOMIC Magazine Inc., 917 Orchid Drive , Lewisville, TX 75067
info@atomicmag.com
All site content, including images and text, is copyright 1999-2013 ATOMIC Magazine, Inc. & www.RetroRadar.com
This material may not be reproduced, borrowed, or used for any purpose except by written permission of the copyright holder. Terms and Conditions of use.