Free Radicals At The Top Of Its Game On Its Latest LP

Courtesy: Free Radicals

Well…that didn’t take long.  Almost eight months after it released its most recent album Outside The Comfort Zone, independent funk/jazz instrumental act Free Radicals is set to release its next recording, No State Solution.  Currently set for release this Friday, No State Solution is another engaging and entertaining offering from the Houston, Texas-based band.  It is everything that audiences have come to expect from the group, as is evidenced right from the album’s outset.  That upbeat, socially conscious work will be discussed shortly.  ‘Screaming,’ which comes later in the album’s 71-minute run is another standout entry included in the album that is certain to appeal to the group’s longtime fans.  It will be discussed later.  ‘Cheeto News Coma,’ is the album’s shortest track, but is also one of its most engaging arrangements, too.  To that end, it is one more song that shows how much this record has to offer.  All three songs noted here to plenty to show why listeners across the board will appreciate this latest effort from Free Radicals.  When they are considered along with the rest of the album’s many songs (in all, the album boasts 25 songs), the whole proves to be a record that is easy on the ears and sure to be a hit for any listener.

Free Radicals’ new extensive 25-song, 71-minute album No State Solution is another appealing offering from the veteran independent jazz/funk outfit.  That is because yet again, the Houston, Texas-based group has crafted a full-length album whose arrangements do an expert job of keeping listeners engaged while also getting listeners thinking.  This is proven right from the outset in the album’s opener and title track.  In the case of this song, it is listed additionally as Lacandon Remix ft. Marcos.  In regards to its musical arrangement, this song does a wonderful job of bridging the funk sounds of the 1960s and 70s with a more modern sound that, in the end, proves wholly infectious.  That is thanks to the balance of the horns, hand percussion (or what sounds like hand percussion), keyboards and other elements.  Listeners will be pleased in hearing the solid balance of each element here.  The balance in the song’s arrangement is just one part of what makes it stand out.  It doesn’t take a close listen to realize the celebratory vibe in the arrangement.  That vibe is a great compliment to the song’s simple, straight forward lyrical message.  That message is one of unity.  The vocalist speaks in straight forward fashion here, “No state solution…we’re supposed to find the solution for ourselves…One world…one human race.”  There are other things said along the way, but without a lyrics sheet to reference, it is tough to figure out what exactly is being said.  Enough is under stood though, that the message becomes clear.  We must celebrate unity and the fact that we are first and foremost all part of the human race.  There is no one state solution, two state solution or even three state solution.  We have got to learn to unite.  That positive message and equally positive vibe collectively do plenty to get listeners’ attention and to keep it.  With any luck, listeners will take the message and emotion to heart and spread that message.  Now having noted this, ‘No State Solution’ is just one of the songs that shows why this record is another positive effort from Free Radicals.  ‘Screaming,’ which comes later in the album’s run is another key addition to the album.

‘Screaming’ is a fitting title for itself.  That is because while it lacks any lyrical content, its arrangement speaks loud and clear.  The absolutely wailing saxophones come across with full aggression, sounding just like someone screaming in anger and frustration.  The drums keep the song moving with their hip-hop vibe.  The bass adds one more touch to the arrangement that, when joined with the noted elements, creates a certain sense of controlled chaos.  There is no doubt that controlled chaos was fully intended even as the song enters its “B” section.  The manic energy in that section builds on the sharp emotion in the “A” section, ensuring even more listeners’ maintained engagement.  Considering that this album is coming along amidst one of America’s most turbulent times, the immediate thought that comes to mind is the protests that have arisen as a result of the nation’s shootings, the controversies caused by Donald J. Trump and so much more.  The up and down of the sections as it goes from “A” to “B” and back to “A” makes the song (and its seeming message) hit even harder.  Keeping this in mind, the whole of the song shows easily why it, too is such an important addition to No State Solution.  It still is not the last of the album’s most important entries.  ‘Cheeto News Coma,’ which comes even later in the record’s run is yet another key entry.

‘Cheeto News Coma’ pretty much speaks for itself just in its title.  There is little, if any, doubt as to what this short opus is about.  This is 53-seconds of pure musical chaos.  It’s controlled chaos, but chaos nonetheless.  In the less than one-minute run here, one can see the different channels flashing footage of the so-called commander-in-chief and his antics.  The end result is the constant onslaught just putting people in a “coma” so to speak because it’s so overwhelming.  This is clear in the loud, raucous drumming set alongside the wild sax playing and bass line.  The quick jolt from the flute at the end is a solid final statement about the impact of the impact of that constant barrage of news.  All in all, it is a great, original way to address the 24/7 coverage of the giant cheeto in charge.  When the seeming message delivered here through this quick arrangement is considered along with the arrangements in the previously noted songs and even the rest of the songs not noted here, the whole of the album is certain to not only entertain listeners but definitely keep them engaged, too.  To that end, No State Solution proves in the end to be a record that will be a hit with any listener.

Free Radicals’ latest full-length studio recording No State Solution is a strong new effort from the independent jazz/funk outfit that is certain to appeal to any listener.  As has been discussed here, that is proven in part through the album’s upbeat, socially conscious opener/title track.  The positive vibes in the song’s arrangement couple with the positive lyrical theme to make it a strong, solid start to the album.  ‘Screaming’ wonderfully emulates the frustration that must be felt by Americans as a result of shootings, political madness and so much more.  ‘Cheeto News Coma’ speaks for itself.  The controlled chaos in the song’s arrangement illustrates so well the chaos of trying to escape the constant barrage of news on a certain figure.  Between those songs and the others not directly noted here, the whole of No State Solution is a record that proves to be just as solid of an effort as the band’s previous albums.  It will be available this Friday.  More information on No State Solution is available online now along with all of Free Radicals’ latest news and more at:

 

 

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