Bonerama: Bringing It Home

There's something wonderfully powerful about a stage full of trombones.  New Orleans' Bonerama puts on a magical show, documented on Bringing It Home.  Recorded over two September nights on their home turf at Tipitina's, they run through their repertoire, sprinkling in choice covers,

The beauty of Bonerama is their versatility.  At times they wail with the power of a chugging freight train, yet other times they play with with the touch and regal nature of an orchestra.

Bonerama makes several classic rock tunes their own, interpreting Led Zeppelin's "Ocean" and the Beatles' "Yer Blues" and "Helter Skelter" in a truly original way; the distortion-laden trombone sounds on "Ocean" are a must-hear.  They do justice to the locals with the Meter's "Cabbage Alley" and "By Athenish," which features some downright dirty licks from guitarist Bert Cotton.  They also pay homage to newer inhabitants with their cover of Garage A Trois' "Sprung Monkey." 

The strongest cover is Thelonious Monk's "Epistrophy," which puts the playing of the entire band on display.  The trombones howl and moan, the raunchy guitar lines, and sousaphone provides the low end.

But it is on the originals that Bonerama truly shines.  The disc-opening "Bayou Betty" is a raucous tune fit for the background music of a car chase, while "And I Know" is classic Nawlins funk. 

"Mr. Go" is one of the stronger tracks on the disc, with great tempo changes.  It charges ahead frenetically, the pace gradually slows, and is at a near crawl at about two and a half minutes in, and then race forward again, only to slow it back down.

While Galactic drummer Stanton Moore sits in as a guest, adding to the expert playing. "Gekko Love" is all about the drumming of Eric Bolivar, who drives the groove as the brass plays over and around him.

All told, there are 13 tracks of music: seven covers and six originals.  Whether you're a fan of rock, jazz, or funk – if you're a music fan at all – you'll dig what's here. 

 

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