Anyone who picks up the Codetalkers' self-titled debut hoping for a sampling of what makes Col. Bruce Hampton a legend will instead hear a disc that lacks true musical voodoo. For the uninitiated, the zenith of Hampton's career thus far is the Aquarium Rescue Unit, which had a nice run in the early '90s as a featured band on the H.O.R.D.E. tour with Widespread Panic and Phish. Hampton actually co-organized that tour, helping to bring the jam scene from the underground to the not-quite-above-ground.
As for his latest project, all the elements of another great Hampton-led band are there -- impeccable musicianship, lack of concern for genre. But the hypnotic factor that informs his best collaborations is absent. The music is mostly passable country rock and occasional stabs at jazz -- suitable for middle-act status at the Star Bar on a Saturday night, sure. But this is the Colonel. Fans expect more.
But is this really a Col. Bruce band? Hampton sings only three of the 10 songs. The rest are sung by guitarist Bobby Lee Rodgers. And keep in mind: This is the Codetalkers with Col. Bruce Hampton. Maybe he's just dropping in to be nice. If so, he's absolved of all blame.
Beck and Alabama Shakes...that's about it. I'm sure there's an unknown or two I would…
Well, this years Music Midtown sucks!
I'm pretty sure he was 19.
3 people apparently love handing over an extra 40% in fees for nothing in return…
Dang. I thought they would name some actual headliners.