Dominique Cravic & Les Primitifs du Futur
Featuring Daniel Colin, Fabienne Donard and special guest Raul Barboza on accordions
The liner notes (all in French get your dictionary!) belabor the difference between "amateurs" and "professional musicians." This band is the former: their most famous member is a comic book artist (underground legend Robert Crumb) and their repertoire is '20s dance tunes. Or that's what it sounds like: here are new tunes, dressed in old styles. Count 'em on "Fox Musette." The guitar chugs steadily like Django's Hot Club Quintet, Crumb does string-band moves on mandolin and a Hawaiian guitar. Lusty sax romps with dainty accordion, and there's some weathered scat that's straight out of the 'Thirties. It could be a joke but it's rarely corny; when the xylophone skitters you find yourself smiling. Professional? No. Amateurish? Decidedly not.
"Scattin' the Blues" is all strings; the scat is Daniel Huck, and he goes wild. Many things roll by: xylophone novelties, misterioso bits, a bit of a rumba. "Kid Chocolat" has flutes, a Cuban boxer, a tale of woe, and lots of maracas. Marc Richard's trumpet is a plus, as are the lyrics. "Valse Chinoise" is vintage exotica, nice but overly sweet. The same applies to "Les Dernier Musette": accordions, musical saw and vibes are too much! Another blues wanders by, then we get "Desaccord Marroche," perhaps the album's best. Cravic's singing is suave, the band offers a solid jazz backing. The guitars walk slippery, and the bass bows vividly, Slam Stuart without the scatting. Here is the mood and here is the sound: a simple joy, from an era I thought had passed. Not yet it hasn't, for that I am glad. - John Barrett
© 2000 RootsWorld. No reproduction of any part of this page or its associated files is permitted without express written permission.