As you all know well by now, and if you do not know, then, you should know, Killer Opening Songs is always on the lookout for some good, slow-burning, trail-blazing, soul-enhancing groove. Genres mean nothing to our little friend’s search for melodies that make it shake its you- know-what all the way to the ground. And back up again. This is how K.O.S. came across Garage a Trois.
GaT, as its followers call it, was born in New Orleans (where else but?) as a trio-cum-quartet at the tail end of the 90s. Their first full-length studio album (which is sitting by K.O.S.’s side as it is typing this post) was Emphasizer and it defied genres and styles. Its follow-up, Outre Mer, was even groovier and more uniformly harmonic. This is the one on which Killer Opening Songs is focusing tonight. The title track has all the elements one has come to expect of GaT: strong funk hook, brilliant guitar work, innovative percussion, steady and reliable drumming and an explosive, winner-takes-all saxophonist. And you know what? This is just the opening track.
Charlie Hunter on guitar, Stanton Moore on drums, Mike Dillon on percussion (although it looks more like a xylophone what he is playing in the clip below) and Skerik on saxophone have created the sort of musical landscape that can only come from a place like New Orleans. Like the city itself, GaT’s music is hard to define but easy to fall in love with, even for an entity like Killer Opening Songs, that has never been to the States. At times the melodies are quirky (K.O.S. remembers Plena for my Grundle from their previous record, Emphasizer), on other occasions they are loose and yet there is a tightness all the way throughout their pieces, a togetherness, if you like.
If you are into modern jazz, you will surely become a devotee of Garage a Trois. If K.O.S. were pressed to define their style, our Regular Section with Murderous Tendencies would have to invent a category, like jazz-punk-Latin-funk or something along those lines. Above all, Garage a Trois is groove, just pure groove.
Next Post: “Sunday Mornings: Coffee, Reflections and Music”, to be published on Sunday 15th February at 10am (GMT)