Smooth Groovin’s with Anton
Anton Graham introduces and reviews some of the best new age, ambient and lounge music out there to accompany you and uplift you, in the spa or anywhere else.
Pat Metheny Group
The Way Up
Pat Metheny is a giant of the music scene, and his albums are both very accessible and very complex. His latest Group album is arranged in a series of four tracks, but three of them are more than 15 minutes long, and provide a wide range of feels. As is almost always the case with PMG music, the prevailing mood is “Up”, as the title suggests. The music bears listening to many many times, always offering up new items hidden in the structure by perfectionist Pat.
Ronny is a guitarist born in London who was prominent in the acid-jazz explosion of the mid-1990s. He has shifted styles and now does smooth jazz with a standard George Benson type feel. But it is good music which avoids the dreaded “Smooth Jazz” appellation. Ronny is not Pat Metheny, but he is a capable writer and player, and this new album released in November of 2004 is a pleasant listen.
Zero Non Sumness
This is a British outfit that creates dance pop, and this album, released in 2003, contains some very listenable material and was successful for them. The British continue to lead the way on pop music in many ways, in spite of having a much smaller population than the United States and the remnants of a stultifying class system. But Planet Funk is a reminder that there are musical juices flowing in the British Isles that are worth investigating.
From Detroit to J.A.
The Kleptones are a hip-hop outfit that produce some of the best music being released into our jaded ears by stealing sounds and riffs and whole songs from everywhere, mashing everything together in ways that must often astonish the people from whom the material was “Stolen”.This album, released in January, follows their brilliant A Night at the Hip-Hopera. Welcome to the future.