2/26/2007

James Sudakow-Green

Artist: James Sudakow
Title: Green
Genre: Progressive Rock
Label: Independent
Website
CD Baby Link

Electric violin player James Sudakow credits rock guitarists with giving him the inspiration to create his musical progressive rock expedition. The list is impressive, Jimi Hendrix, Dave Navarro (Jane’s Addiction), and Vernon Reid (Living Colour) are the top three six-string innovators that Sudakow points to as his mentors in sound.

Green is the title of Sudakow’s six-track CD. This instrumental assault of the senses focuses on six basic colors, all of course different in every way. The cover of the CD is very expressive with all the colors as well. Some folks may think right away because of the tie die image on the cover that this is something relating to jamband music, which would be way off base. Think of Jean-Luc Ponty on mescaline or David Ragsdale on speed, Sudakow is very different, in a good way.

“Black” is the opening track and it begins with some powerful and prolific drums that really get your blood pumping through your arteries, then Sudakow kicks it into high gear with some crazy violin playing, think of guitar shredding but with a violin. It is not that hard to imagine because after you listen a few times it starts sounding like a guitar. Then as you get towards the end of the recording and “Blue” starts, the violin sounds more synthesized, like keyboards. This is one example of the radical changes he takes the violin through from one composition to the next.

After taking all of it in you start to realize the concept behind this entire project-it is to show you the listener, all the different colors that the violin is capable of creating within the musical spectrum. It does not hurt that Sudakow has two band mates that know their chops; it fleshes out his overall sound nicely. David Gaziel (drums) and Matt Bissonette (bass) make for an outstanding rhythm section. Once I stopped for a moment to reflect upon it all after intently listening for the second time I realized that the three instruments combining their strengths started sounding more like an army of musicians.

This music requires several listens before you really understand what Sudakow is accomplishing through his music. I will be the first to admit that after hearing this the first time I was not too sure, but that just means I needed to listen again to get an entirely different outlook on another day. Without fail, this works for me, especially when a CD has merits like Green.

© Keith "MuzikMan" Hannaleck

February 26, 2007

1. Black (8:21)
2. Purple (5:47)
3. Orange (9:43)
4. Green (6:26)
5. Red (10:14)
6. Blue (5:08)

Credits:

James Sudakow: electric violins
David Gaziel: drums
Matt Bissonette: bass

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