JJ Grey & Mofro – Olustee (2024) [FLAC 24bit/96kHz]

JJ Grey & Mofro - Olustee (2024) [FLAC 24bit/96kHz] Download

JJ Grey & Mofro – Olustee (2024)
FLAC (tracks) 24 bit/96 kHz | Time – 49:10 minutes | 996 MB | Genre: Rock, Country Rock
Studio Masters, Official Digital Download | Front Cover | © Alligator

As the only player who has appeared on all of Mofro’s albums, singer JJ Grey is a funky force of nature. The North Floridian returns nine years after his last recording, still honing his mix of soul passion, Skynyrd-styled rock, outright funk and that sassy, butt-shaking magic that makes New Orleans music so irresistible. Grey is skilled in writing across rhythm-heavy genres and Olustee is another strong collection that even calls on the skills of the Budapest Symphony Orchestra under conductor Zoltán Pad.The title track is a bluesy shaker, spiced with harmonica and slinky guitar that eventually turns into a huge electric solo for guitarist Pete Winders. The album’s lone cover, “Seminole Wind,” is made bigger through liberal use of reverb, before it, too, raves up and becomes a solo showcase, this time for trumpet. “Wonderland” is a pure soul jump number—always one of Grey’s strongest suits—and he convincingly steps into it as a born-to-lead soul shouter. He gets his strut on in “Rooster” and rolls out the heavy, horn-aided funk, singing: “I’m a rooster, full legit/ Keeping it strong boy with true grit.” Recorded at Retrophonics Studio in Saint Augustine, Florida, Olustee was recorded by Jim Devito and produced by Grey and Ivory Daniel; its sonics have a convincing snap with just enough low end to get its points across.

Several holdovers from Grey’s last album accompany him, including bassist Todd Smallie and trumpeters Dennis Marion and Marcus Parsley. A new wrinkle is that Grey is now extra determined to sing big, soaring pop soul ballads, often surrounded by liberal amounts of violins and brass. His aspirations are admirable, and for the most part he pulls them off. The lyrics turn fanciful in “The Sea” (“The moon shining through, silvered by a storm/ Painted on the night, all the way to dawn”), where he pushes his falsetto to sell this odd choice of an opening track. Though clearly impassioned, his vocals on “On a Breeze”—supported by a quartet of backing singers—are less convincing, but later in “Waiting” he’s more believable as a full-on 1960s soul cryer, emotionally belting out lines condemning his sloth while simultaneously demolishing a meaningless cliché: “Everyone’s a winner/ Well we damn well know that’s a lie/ ‘Cause how the hell you gonna win/ If you don’t even get out there and try?” Continuing to stir his piquant roux of Southern rock, funk and blue-eyed soul, JJ Grey is an American music original.


1-1. JJ Grey & Mofro – The Sea (04:45)
1-2. JJ Grey & Mofro – Top Of The World (03:29)
1-3. JJ Grey & Mofro – On A Breeze (04:35)
1-4. JJ Grey & Mofro – Olustee (05:09)
1-5. JJ Grey & Mofro – Seminole Wind (06:16)
1-6. JJ Grey & Mofro – Wonderland (03:34)
1-7. JJ Grey & Mofro – Starry Night (04:41)
1-8. JJ Grey & Mofro – Free High (03:39)
1-9. JJ Grey & Mofro – Waiting (03:45)
1-10. JJ Grey & Mofro – Rooster (04:51)
1-11. JJ Grey & Mofro – Deeper Than Belief (04:21)

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