Taken For A Ride
Reviews for Taken For a Ride
concepts - the recordings which stubbornly defy being jammed into any
existing pigeonholes - immediately arrest the ears. So it is with the
Black Taxi project: a hot assembly of Melbourne jazz players and three
female singers sharing the leads on a batch of sharp contemporary songs
from the pens of Dave Wayman and Terry Bradford. It's an album that carries
the spark of innovation, moving along unexpected lines to create a fresh
sound notably devoid of cliche and cynicism. They make music from the
sunny side of the street; where pop songs do a sexy, lively dance with
sassy, bright jazz instrumentation. There are cheeky bursts from the horn
players, the lively canter of a vibraphone, a bubbling double bass. The
singers relish their moments, with Leah Cotterell, April Ronsisvalle and
Yasmine Shoobridge shining on dusky ballads (Don't Worry ), cute melodies
(Traffic Jam ) and roaring soul (So Twisted ). That said, there's still
plenty of meat on the bones of these songs; sharp barbs of irony to the
lyrics of Hounds of God, introspective reflections of yearnings and loves
on I Concentrate on You. It's a case of smart, sophisticated, sassy ideas
in a tight embrace with like-minded music. When something this curious
comes around, you don't want to pass it by. Instead, you want to listen.
Three fabulous singers who come across as sassy angels
- that is the most striking iniyial impression of this gorgeous album.
Subsequent listenings though, reveal a musical depth to match the delectable
icing provided by Leah Cotterell, April Ronsisvalle and Yasmin Shoobridge.
The album presents a mixture of smoky, biting ballads and snappy tunes
that are, by turns, swinging and funky in a way that achieves a refreshing
and original style for this band. The songs are addictively melodic, while
the lyrics, by David Wayman and Terry Bradford, are clever and adult.
No sign on this winner of any sort of "moon in June" mentality.
The album opener, Traffic jam, is a terrific example - oh so catchy, it
could bet the world's first anti-road rage song.