Golden Gate Grooves 2012
A bit of rock, a tad of funk, a touch of jazz, a smattering of pop and a bunch of blues is what you'll get when you pick up David Landon's new one, "I Like It Too Much."
According to the liners, Landon has "written, arranged, produced, recorded, mixed and mastered" this brand new effort. He's lead guitarist, lead vocalist, played some keyboard, written horn arrangements and produced "other sounds." Whew! He's obviously all over this album, and his exemplary attention to musical detail shines throughout the 59-minute affair.
On this, Landon's fifth CD, he's been privileged with the guest artistry of a true "who's who" of Bay Area musicians, (several of them world-class,) a few of whom include impeccable bassist Steve Evans; steady Randy Hayes on drums; Charles McNeal on superb sax; the first-rate Tony Stead on Hammond B-3; Melvin Seals on same; Tom Poole and Mike Rinta on horns and the singing talents of Alexandra Kaprelian on backup vocals.
Of the cuts, the ballad, "Our Last Goodbye" conjures British soul artist George Michael with its pop-sensibilities and anguished guitar work. The title track is a standout of the record in its tale of a man's indulgences and nasty habits, ("it ain't good for me, but it's just what I want to do.")
Positively outstanding is guest artist's Michael Peloquin's sax and harmonica playing on "A Little Bit Better" (without you.) The interplay between Landon and his good buddy Alvon Johnson (guitar/vocals) just blues-rocks in the playful, "That's What Friends Are For," an album highlight. One of the album's tracks, "Frictitious" has a funky feel and an Average White Band groove.
Landon's horn arrangements are outstanding throughout. Kelly Park takes on those same duties with aplomb on "Well Alright."
The CD contains, among its 11 songs, three instrumentals, which in most any other album would be about two too much, but Landon makes the most of them through his clever, compelling and sometimes incendiary guitar work and chart composition.
You want to buy this one 'cause of Landon's tremendous guitar work. He can be a monster on his chosen instrument.
Ultimately this album comprises yet another fine & impressive effort by this Berkeley-based musician of dazzling talent.