BN.com Gift Guide

Brother's Keeper

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Thom Jurek
Karl Denson's Brother's Keeper is his initial Shanachie offering and revives his longstanding Tiny Universe outfit that went on recording hiatus in 2004. 2007 saw the release of the Karl Denson Trio's killer Lunar Orbit with just his saxophone, a Hammond B-3, and drums. The set offered a new sonic take on that classic jazz sound. Brother's Keeper, by contrast, features a full septet with MeShell Nd├ęgeocello on electric bass augmented by a slew of guest musicians who include an expanded horn section and strings. The sound here is different than past Tiny Universe offerings. It's a very roots-oriented sound that, while not exactly enveloping the back-to-basics of funk and ...
See more details below
Other sellers (CD)
  • All (4) from $4.95   
  • New (3) from $12.50   
  • Used (1) from $4.95   

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Thom Jurek
Karl Denson's Brother's Keeper is his initial Shanachie offering and revives his longstanding Tiny Universe outfit that went on recording hiatus in 2004. 2007 saw the release of the Karl Denson Trio's killer Lunar Orbit with just his saxophone, a Hammond B-3, and drums. The set offered a new sonic take on that classic jazz sound. Brother's Keeper, by contrast, features a full septet with MeShell Nd├ęgeocello on electric bass augmented by a slew of guest musicians who include an expanded horn section and strings. The sound here is different than past Tiny Universe offerings. It's a very roots-oriented sound that, while not exactly enveloping the back-to-basics of funk and jazz, folds these into a brew that also includes soul, gospel, reggae, and club jazz. Denson wrote or co-wrote 10 of the set's 11 tunes, two of them with Switchfoot's lead singer Jon Foreman the set opener and first single "Shake It Out," and "Mighty Rebel". Foreman penned the stellar "The Drums of War," and co-producer David Veith helped Denson on "Just Got Paid." "Shake It Out" is the logical choice for a single because it is the closest thing to the classic sound of Tiny Universe. The sound of a Wurlitzer piano, fat bassline, tight snare and kick drum, and a handclap section that feels like it could have come right off either an old Motown record or something by Mitch Ryder & the Detroit Wheels, is all funked up. It's a pure rave-up with some killer rock guitar fills that add depth and dimension. Denson's vocal is right upfront, exhorting the listener to get out on the floor. "Where It Counts" is a more skeletal, nocturnal, soul-funk number with some beautiful horns that descend from the the J.B.'s, while the backing vocals come right out of the Philly International fakebook there is also a beautiful flute solo by Denson to boot. The hinge piece on the album, however, is the two-part title track. It offers an aural view of Denson at his compositional best. We've never heard him -- on record anyway -- quite like this. Complex, elastic funk meets subdued, hypnotic Afro-beat and a straight-up soul melody, turned inside out through a gospel vocal chart complete with call-and-response chorus and jazz syncopation. There's a popping, knotty bassline that drives the rest of the instruments, and a dreamy horn arrangement. The drum breaks by Zak Najor are right upfront in the mix, pulling the listener into the track's uplifting message as Denson testifies: "Yes, I'm my brother's keeper." Part two brings the blues and a tough street reggae into the gumbo as well with strings, no less!, expanding the whole mess instrumentally. "Mighty Rebel" is jazzed-up reggae, and "Monica" is a dubby, soul-kissed love song, while "Take It Down" is a pure neo-soul ballad that evokes both the sexiness of Leroy Hutson's work and the message-oriented songs of Bobby Womack's. Brother's Keeper is the most poignant album Denson has released to date; it's the most autobiographical and spiritual, as well. This is the work of a mature musician and thinker; and one that bears repeated listening because there is so much in this heady brew, it's impossible to take in all these killer grooves in one sitting.
Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • Release Date: 9/15/2009
  • Label: Shanachie
  • UPC: 016351517524
  • Catalog Number: 5175
  • Sales rank: 176,305

Tracks

Disc 1
  1. 1 Shake It Out (3:41)
  2. 2 Where It Counts (3:59)
  3. 3 The Drums of War (5:22)
  4. 4 Brother's Keeper, Pt. 1 (4:23)
  5. 5 Brother's Keeper, Pt. 2 (3:29)
  6. 6 Mighty Rebel (6:17)
  7. 7 Monica (3:53)
  8. 8 Expressions (3:46)
  9. 9 Empty Soul (3:54)
  10. 10 Take It Down (5:38)
  11. 11 Just Got Paid (4:23)
Read More Show Less

Album Credits

Performance Credits
Karl Denson Primary Artist, Flute, Percussion, Saxophone, Vocals
Kenneth Crouch Keyboards, Synthesizer Bass
Henry Hirsch Bass
MeShell NdegeOcello Bass
Jonathan Talbot Strings
Michael Leonhart Trumpet, Cornet, Flugelhorn, Mellophonium
Cochemea Gastelum Baritone Saxophone
Dave Smith Trombone
Eric Krasno Guitar Loops
Briana Jordan Guitar
Marc Ford Acoustic Guitar, Guitar
Marc Ford Acoustic Guitar, Guitar
Laura Reed & Deep Pocket Background Vocals
Shawn Banks Percussion
Zak Najor Drums
Debrissa McKinney Background Vocals
Dave Smith Trombone
Brian Jordan Guitar
Technical Credits
Henry Hirsch Engineer
Karl Denson Composer, Producer, Liner Notes
Andy VanDette Mastering
Chris Theis Engineer
Chris Goldsmith Producer
Jon Foreman Composer
David Veith Composer, Programming, Producer
Read More Show Less

Customer Reviews

Be the first to write a review
( 0 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(0)

4 Star

(0)

3 Star

(0)

2 Star

(0)

1 Star

(0)

Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Noble.com Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & Noble.com that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & Noble.com does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at BN.com or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation

Reminder:

  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & Noble.com and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Noble.com Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & Noble.com reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & Noble.com also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on BN.com. It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

 
Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously