Tim Posgate Hornband
Black Hen Music
You just have to love a CD called Banjo Hockey, how cool is that?
The good news is that the Tim Posgate Hornband is far more than a catchy CD title. This is a very entertaining musical journey.
As you might expect much of the album focuses on the banjo, which Posgate handles superbly.
However, what really allows the banjo to shine here is the instrumentation behind it.
Lina Allemona provides trumpet, Howard Johnson baritone sax and the tuba, and Quinsin Nachoff tenor sax and clarinet. The brass back-up to the banjo is a wonderful contrast.
I particularly like how the tuba and banjo play off against each other on My Car Free Ways.
While much of the music here has a somewhat bluegrass appeal, which is a natural given the spotlight on the banjo, they do a good job of mixing things up too. Spike's New Attitude is much more experimental jazz in nature, yet it doesn't stray too far as to be out of place with the rest of the album.
Going to the Island has a sound that reminds a bit of the opening music to the television classic Cheers, again showing this band is willing to explore just how wide a range of music is possible out of the instrument selection.
This CD wins because it dares to offer the listener a diverse range of music, yet held together in terms of being a cohesive album. It is also memorable because you don't hear this mix in terms of instruments on an instrumental album often.
A winner if you like bluegrass or jazz, and how often can you say that about an album.
A CD that you will not be disappointed in.
Check it out at www.blackhenmusic.com
-- CALVIN DANIELS
-- Review first appeared in Yorkton This Week newspaper June 10, 2009 - Yorkton, SK. Canada