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MP3 Smokin´ Granny - Tarth Shooke

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MP3 Smokin´ Granny
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SG's 3rd release. Progressive funk fusion space jazz-rock... ethereal and crunchy...smile while you twitch.

18 MP3 Songs
ROCK: Progressive Rock, JAZZ: Jazz Fusion



Details:
Released in February 2002, Tarth Shooke is Smokin' Granny's 3rd release (others are "Live at the Bat Cave", 1997 and "Sirius Matter", 1999).

Instrumental music - arrangements and improvisational pieces all recorded live in studio with no overdubs.
Smokin' Granny hails from the Chapel Hill, North Carolina area and have been together since 1994 under this name. (Also 1985-1990 as Freehand)

Personnel for Tarth Shooke:
. Todd Barbee: soprano sax and WX7 wind controller
. Steve Hatch: electric guitar
. Jeff Lindsey: V drums, Yamaha acoustic drums
. David Oskardmay: NST acoustic guitar
. Brian Preston: fretless and fretted basses

Recorded by Ian Davis at Assembled Sound, Chapel Hill
between March and July 2001
Mixed and Mastered by Chris Stamey, Modern Recording, Chapel Hill
Produced by Brian Preston, Metaphoric Music Productions
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Smokin' Granny's music is distributed and played on progressive radio stations all over the world. Smokin' Granny has performed at some of the most prestigious progressive rock festivals and venues including the annual international festival of progressive rock, ProgDay in Chapel Hill, NC and Orion Sound Studios in Baltimore, MD.

CURRENT REVIEWS (As of 7/4/02)

* RE: "Smokin' Granny - "Tarth Shooke"

* From "Sea of Tranquility"
"Smokin' Granny's third release is a euphoric collection of instrumental progressive rock, fusion, and live- in- the -studio improvisations that will leave the listener in awe of the sheer synergy that these players have together. Recalling the eclectic nature of vintage Frank Zappa, and the furious interplay of King Crimson, Smokin' Granny have conjured up a strong successor to their last project, Sirius Matter.
The CD consists of eighteen tracks, which alternate from long improvisations like the Crimson inspired "Tethered https://www.tradebit.comwed Wisdom", to atmospheric jazz rockers like "Tunnels", to short quirky segues like "Whisper" or "Spacevox." Sax player Todd Barbee is once again the main musician, as his melodic bursts highten songs like the acoustic "Fuma Sin Fuego" and the rampaging fusion of "Virgin Flight of the Mumbliepies", which at nine-minutes is the CD's longest track and features the fiercest interplay. Bassist Brian Preston and drummer Jef Lindsey are constantly locked into a serious groove, which allows Barbee and guitarists David Oskardmay and Steve Hatch plenty of room to solo over, although there is never a sense of needless wanking here. A nice touch also is Barbee's use of the WX7 wind controller, which gives an extra layer to the bands sounds and fills in where a keyboard player might have fit.
Tarth Shooke is another fine instrumental release from Smokin' Granny. Fans of spacey fusion or King Crimson inspired improvisational prog will find much to like here."
-Added: June 25th 2002
Reviewer: Pete Pardo
Score: (4.5 stars out of 5)

* "SMOKIN' GRANNY; Tarth Shooke;(Metaphoric)
Some virtuoso musicians just can't decide if they want to play fusion or progressive rock. The lads in North Carolina's Smokin' Granny decided to play both at the same time. Sounding like a big jam session between the Mahavishnu Orchestra and Weather Report on some King Crimson tunes, Tarth Shooke features blazing performances from guitarists Steve Hatch and David Oskardmay, bassist Brian Preston, drummer Jeffrey Damon Lindsey and wind player Todd Barbee, but the quintet never lets their flashy fingerings get the better of the actual tunes. Tracks like "Fuma sin Fuego" and the title track move from one sensibility to another, from melodic accessibility to fiery aggression, with a seamless fluidity and an attention to the needs of the song. More moody pieces like "Assembler" and "Tethered Sky...Skewed Wisdom" concentrate more on mood and atmosphere than vulgar displays. The complex compositions could have formed the backbone of any quality 70s prog or fusion LP. Thankfully, in these days of categorical minutiae, Smokin' Granny sees no reason for the two not to co-exist. Michael Toland
For fans of: King Crimson, Happy the Man, High Tide"
= High Bias, May 2002

"North Carolina based instrumental powerhouse Smokin' Granny returns with the follow up to 1999's Sirius Matter. And it comes as no surprise to me that this is their hottest set to date. In many ways calmer, lower volume, and more ambient than their previous releases, Tarth Shooke also includes some of the most intricately structured compositions the Grannies has come up with yet. The classic Smokin' Granny sound is ever-present. But while the music is still intense, it's also more laid back. It's powerful and even rocking, but sounds more carefully composed. The band still consists of Brian Preston on basses, Todd Barbee on saxophones and midi wind controller, Jeffrey Damon Lindsey on drums, David Oskardmay on acoustic guitar, and Steve Hatch on electric guitar, now elevated to full member since guesting on Sirius Matter.
Smokin' Granny's music consists of instrumental progressive rock that combines jazz and rock influences to produce a sound that is often recognizably their own. Dual electric and acoustic guitars give the music a trippy jazz edge while Todd Barbee's ultra sonic saxophones and midi wind controller honk, wail, and moan in that beautifully distinct style I've grown to love. The band is all over the place shifting pace and thematic gears continually but seamlessly. This is the kind of stuff that will make fans of complex but inventive prog rock drool. LOTS happening, but not over the top. Some of the standout tracks include "Far Places", on which a gorgeous acoustic and electric guitar combination leads the band on a slow voyage given an atmospheric lift by the wind controller acting in its keyboard role. You have to listen closely to "Assembler" to hear all the subtle but intricate instrumental bits. It's easy to get focused on that looooow deep bass as if it were some kind of mantra. On "Tunnels" Barbee's sax and/or controller goes into deep space, the song as a whole sounding like something from an early Gong album. That bass is hypnotic. "Fuma Sin Fuego" has a Shadowfax sound, but with the distinct Smokin' Granny personality. "Tethered Sky... Skewed Wisdom" has a sound that blends a dash of Canterbury with a dose of King Crimson, the wailing Frippoid guitar and potent percussives creating a pounding and somewhat ethereal atmosphere that communicates raw power, meditative calm, and a cool groove. And speaking of a groove, "Virgin Flight Of The Mumbliepies" is a get-down-funky fusion excursion with a strong psychedelic edge in parts. Dig that cool wah'd guitar and kick ass rhythm section.
Smokin' Granny is one of the few bands I've reviewed over the years that I've had the opportunity to see perform live several times, and in live performance they've shined each time. Highly recommended to fans of instrumental progressive rock. Space fans who take the plunge will find much to enjoy as well."
=From Aural Innovations #19 (April 2002)
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* "Smokin' Granny is back with their second release, (ed. note: actually 3rd release) expanding upon their already powerful blend of avant-fusion and funky prog. This time around, they have adopted a much more subdued tone overall, with many ambient excursions thrown into the mix. Many tracks have a modern, almost post-rock vibe, such as "Assembler"; its rhythmically repetitious and jagged electronic percussion and spaced out vibe would feel at home on a Tortoise album. In fact, much of the album reminds me of Isotope 217's Unstable Molecule, with its laid-back groove and Bitches Brew fusion elements. But the band does know how to kick it into overdrive when necessary, and rips through some blistering lines on pieces such as "Tarth Shooke" and "Fuma sin Fuego", in stark contrast with the delicate and pensive outings.
Exploratory improvisations weave tapestries of many interesting textures, from industrial noise, ambient washes, and angular melodies to pounding rhythms that coalesce into intriguing excursions. The powerful yet subtle percussion and buoyant bass anchor and propel the pieces forward, lending a strong backbone to the acoustic/electric guitar interplay and wind sounds. While content to ride and develop a groove, the band isn't afraid to let loose with some scorching riffs at any given moment. The shorter songs and interludes act as microscopic previews of directions and themes tackled at length in the longer pieces. A totally unique and wild blend of instrumental rock, "It smokes without Fire". Visit the Error! Bookmark not defined. for more info and ordering."
= Mike Prete [April 2002] ; Giant ProgWeed Music Revie

* Review of Pre-ProgDay 2001 show at ArtsCenter, Carrboro, NC, Fri Aug 31, 2001:
"Next up was Smokin' Granny. I just can't say stress enough how good these guys are. I hadn't seen them for a couple years and they were tighter and better than ever.
They've really got a recognizable sound, due in no small part to Todd Barbee's Midi wind controller, which is kind of a spacey electronic saxophone. The band can rock hard,
but is also comfortable in playing a unique blend of progressive rock and jazz fusion.
They played a number of old songs plus a few from their new CD, which though not out yet, was being sold on CDR at the show and buyers will get a copy of the official release
when it's ready. I SCOOPED one up. I give this band my highest recommendation. Check out their web site at: https://www.tradebit.com
- Jerry Kranitz

* "My Gnosis Rating: 11
Smokin' Granny Crankcase Sirius Matter
1999 Metaphoric Music Productions"
"Very inventive and original instrumental prog/fusion. The music is exceptionally melodious but kicks your booty with it's occasional hard-edge, and ever changing moods.
There are no bands that I can think to compare them to, but, it does sometimes sound like the German band "Octafish". Several members of Smokin' Granny were previously in the band Freehand. Excellent stuff."
-Gnosis 2000

Here are some reviews of Sirius Matter, Smokin' Granny's 2nd release:

"As well as his dynamic interludes on tenor saxophone, Todd Barbee adds dramtic synthesizer textures to the atmospheric grooves of "Neural Pulse", "Moveable Feast", "Alien Space Journey", and "Road to the Desert." Ranging from the eastern motif of "Bhairava" to the exotic feedback slide guitar of the atmospheric "Ghost Catcher Box", the inventive scope of Sirius Matter indicates why Smokin' Granny is one of the more inventive fusion projects of 1999... highly recommended."
David Lewis, Cadence Magazine, January 2000.

"Oozing musicianship and graced with just a touch of self-deprecating humor, Smokin' Granny's Sirius Matter is one of the most enjoyable prog/jazz hybrid albums I've ever encountered."
James Bickers, Sea of Tranquility, Winter 2000.

Discography of the personnel:

Todd:
"Anubis Leisure Society Orchestra", Good Neighbors, 1989
"Thinking Out Loud...", Freehand, 1988 & 1997, MMP, IEV
Knocked Down Smiling, 1992, Dr. Lime
"Live at the Bat Cave" Smokin' Granny, 1997, MMP
"Crank Case" Smokin' Granny on Moonchild '98, 1998, Moonchild Rec.
"Sirius Matter" Smokin' Granny, 1999, MMP
"Live at WXDU" Onomata, 2000, Assembled Sound
"Progday Encore?" (7 CD box set), 2001, Smokin' Granny on Disc 2, live in 1997
"Tarth Shooke", Smokin' Granny, 2002, MMP
"Emergent Phenomena", Groove Stream Attractor, 2002, 713/MMP

Jeff:
"The Alchemist" Daily Planet on New Faces, 1984, BME
"Chronicles" Daily Planet, 1985, MMP
"Thinking out Loud..." Freehand, 1988 & 1997, MMP and IEV
"The Accidentals" The Accidentals, 1996
"Live at the Bat Cave" Smokin' Granny, 1997, MMP
"Crank Case" Smokin' Granny on Moonchild '98, 1998, Moonchild Rec.
"SinkorSwim" Early Grace, 1999, EG Records
"Sirius Matter" Smokin' Granny, 1999, MMP
"Progday Encore?" (7 CD box set), 2001, Smokin' Granny on Disc 2, live in 1997
"Tarth Shooke" Smokin' Granny, 2002, MMP
"Emergent Phenomena", Groove Stream Attractor, 2002, 713/MMP

Brian:
"The Alchemist" Daily Planet on New Faces, 1984, BME
"Chronicles" Daily Planet, 1985, MMP
"Thinking out Loud..." Freehand, 1988 & 1997, MMP and IEV
"Messablues" Messablues, 1993, MMP
"Live at the Bat Cave" Smokin' Granny, 1997, MMP
"Crank Case" Smokin' Granny on Moonchild '98, 1998, Moonchild Rec.
"Sirius Matter" Smokin' Granny, 1999, MMP
"Live at WXDU" Onomata, 2000, AS
"Progday Encore?" (7 CD box set), 2001, Smokin' Granny on Disc 2, live in 1997
"Tarth Shooke" Smokin' Granny, 2002, MMP
"Emergent Phenomena", Groove Stream Attractor, 2002, 713/MMP

Steve:
"The Uncertainty Principle" Volare', 1998, Lazer's Edge
"Sirius Matter" Smokin' Granny, 1999, MMP
"Memoirs" Volare', 2001, Pleasant Green Records
"Progday Encore?" (7 CD box set), 2001, Volare' on Disc 3, live in 1997
"Tarth Shooke" Smokin' Granny, 2002, MMP

MORE REVIEWS:

* "Oozing musicianship and graced with just a touch of self-deprecating humor, Smokin' Granny's Sirius Matter is one of the most enjoyable prog/jazz hybrid albums I've ever encountered. The opener, 'Barnacle Bob's Big Bang Bonanza', is a perfect place to start, and sports one of
the most memorable saxophone riffs you'll ever hear; one listen and you've got it memorized for life. A similar riff rears its lovely head on 'Edible Polymers'. Saxman Todd Barbee pays no attention to the perceived rules of jazz sax - and thank God for that! The Granny can get
serious when they want to - the wonderful 'Toad Pizza' is a great example, song title notwithstanding. Indeed, Sirius Matter oscillates well between inspired silliness and serious inspiration. Such diversity makes for a compelling listen. The majority of the album was recorded live in the studio - a remarkable feat, given how rich and complex much of this material is. The recording job is outstanding, on the level of a major-label jazz release. This one's a real keeper, and you can bet that we'll be
eagerly watching for what's to come from these talented guys."
- James Bickers, Sea of Tranquillity, #4, Winter 2000
e mail - [email protected]://www.tradebit.com, https://www.tradebit.com

* "Smokin' Granny is an interesting blend of complex, but accessible music... The grooving vibe of Barnacle Bob's Big Bang Bonanza has some fretless bass work that is sometimes funk, sometimes jazz, and is always happening. Squid is a funk type tune with cool horn melodies and an infectious bass/drum groove that will keep your feet tapping. There is some Zappa influence, and maybe some of the technical, fun spirited jamming style of Phish, but Smokin' Granny definitely have developed a sound that is original and powerful."
- Jay Piccirillo, BASS FRONTIERS, Volume 7 Number 3, August 2000

* "As well as his dynamic interludes on tenor saxophone, Todd Barbee adds dramatic synthesizer textures to the atmospheric grooves of "Neural Pulse," "Moveable Feast," "Alien Space Journey" and "Road to the Desert." Ranging from the eastern motif of "Bhairava" to the exotic feedback slide guitar of the atmospheric "Ghost Catcher Box," the inventive scope of (Sirius Matter) indicates why Smokin' Granny ... is one of the more inventive fusion projects of 1999. Highly recommended."
- David Lewis, Cadence Magazine, Vol. 26, No. 1, January 2000

* " 'Sirius Matter' ... contains excellent, original and exciting music. The music on this CD reminds me at different points of Gong, National Health, Frank Zappa and Soft Machine. What we have here is an entirely instrumental band making music that is by turns experimental, jazzy, funky, spacey and melodic. Oh, and it's got a sense of humour too. My favourite tracks are those such as 'Neural Pulse,' 'Moveable Feast,' and 'Bhairava' which develop and add to the original themes to create musical journeys which return one to the point of origin slightly wiser than on departure."
- David Weston, Bathtub of Adventures, Essex, England
https://www.tradebit.com
!! Voted best album of 1999 for "In-a-tent" category along with Phish!!

* "...it's a little wild, crazy and over the top, but there's still plenty of beefy rock here to sink your teeth into, and a big helping of jagged and dissonant maneuverings... (Sirius Matter is) one smokin' CD debut that certainly ranks among the year's best... This one is strong contender for my best of '99."
- Peter Thelen, Expose' Magazine, Exposure Radio Network
(https://www.tradebit.com)

* "Smokin' Granny was one of those bands who came out on stage, I had no idea who they were, and they proceeded to blow my mind with their instrumental jazzy but heavy rockin' semi-avant progressive rock. The band also has a knack for 'stick in your head' riffs that form the backbone of songs and suck you in for an attentive listen to the madness. Smokin' Granny is a must for fans of complex, but accessible instrumental progressive with a jazz influence, But it's NOT fusion... I can detect a distinct Smokin' Granny sound. Not an easy thing to do."
- Jerry Kranitz from August 1999 review of Sirius Matter

* "(Smokin' Granny was) one of the big surprises of the weekend for me. Featuring acoustic guitar, bass, percussion, and a horn/reed player who continually switched between a variety of instruments, these guys played challenging music that defies easy description. The horn player was fascinating, and if I closed my eyes I would often swear he was playing keyboards. There was one frenetic moment when they reminded me of Dr. Nerve. ...close listen to their cassette and the first band that comes to mind is Curlew. ...do yourself a favor and check out their cassette."
- 9/2/97, Jerry Kranitz, https://www.tradebit.com
Columbus, Ohio


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