You don’t have to watch Treme to know that Troy “Trombone Shorty” Andrews is a New Orleans music legend from a tender age
through to the present. You can just listen to his sound and hear history, joy,
the pains of being dismissed and the kick of being renewed through what he
calls his stewing, jazzy “Supafunkrock” Besides do you have a club named after
you? No you do not.
While not his first or best record (Orleans’ swinging post-bop inspired CDs Swingin’ Gate, 12 & Shorty and Orleans
& Claiborne are amongst his lot) Backatown announces his compositional adulthood, his major label reign and his prowess on
instruments other than brass.
With a lively well-recorded band of regulars in Orleans
Avenue and producer Ben Ellman, everything from Allen Toussaint’s “On Your Way
Down,” (Toussaint plays piano on it) to Shorty’s originals roll on with
funk-driven marching rhythms backing some of the raunchiest trumpet vamps since
Lester Bowie (“Hurricane Season”) and bass and brass lines as formidable as any
Ohio Players’ jam. Along with re-branding his sound to include hip hop and
neo-soul touches, Shorty bringz his vocal emotionalism to the forefront with
the power-rough-housing “Right to Complain” and the sauntering R&B ballad,
“Fallin'” Though you might come to hear Shorty croon like he hasn’t on previous
recordings, you’ll stay for the taut jamming drum-cracking instrumentals. Ouch.
Standout Tracks: “Hurricane Season,” “On Your Way Down”, “In the 6th” A.D. AMOROSI