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Various Artists: Kickin’ Some Brass

Shanachie Records is on a roll. First came their Kickin the 3, a collection of soul-jazz organ grooves. Now comes Kickin’ Some Brass (Shanachie 6028, 64:03) which does the same for the deadly New Orleans marching band tradition. Like its predecessor, Kickin’… doesn’t pretend to be a comprehensive representation of the genre, that would take two or three discs. It does, however manage to offer a pretty interesting cross-#section. There’s the funk: The New Birth Brass Band’s “Ms. Lollipop” and the Re-Birth Brass Band’s “Rollin.” There’s the swing: Lester Bowie’s Brass Fantasy’s “Siesta for the Fiesta” and there’s the gospel-the Treme Brass Band’s “Just a Closer Walk with Thee.” And then there’s the stuff that shows the tradition in a different light as a fitting vehicle for nearly any interpretive muse. If you doubt, there’s the Les Miserables Brass Band’s cover of Hendrix’s “Manic Depression,” turning the world’s most violent waltz into an opportunity for some flatulent mischief.

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