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Were Stuck by Stuck

Knowing how difficult it is to write, arrange, produce, and perform even ONE style of music to make a great album release, I have the utmost respect for a band that can successfully combine elements of Rock, Pop, Free-Jazz, Bebop, Rap, Disco, Funk, Reggae, Hip-hop, and Country into 12 focused, integrated, and downright groovy tracks. Chisa and her band, Stuck, are here to bring you Fusion in the purist sense of the word (if that’s not too much of a contradiction in terms).

Stuck winds around the twists and turns of a carefully constructed obstacle course, effortlessly shifting (say, on track 2) from odd meters such as 13/8 to a more familiar 6/8, then to 4/4 reggae (!), and then back to 6/8, never once letting up on the intensity and always pushing the groove. Like a tea party in a souped-up, well-oiled convertible weaving through traffic at high speed, they proceed with grace and ease, never spilling a drop. Imbued with a delicious sense of humor, an inspired gaiety, and a smoldering sexuality, Stuck’s music is just the challenge that Fusion players aspire to take on. But it is Chisa’s personality, charm, and strong vocal intuitions that keep the music from being just an exercise in What Hasn’t Been Done Yet. That’s right, it’s good listening too!

Cahill’s Chapman stick lends a particular zing to the band’s sound, providing a trippy and spacial background that’s altogether refreshing. Pavolka switches from bass figures to a walking Bebop-style swing and on to Funk without a hiccup, carrying the band harmonically to their next task with a steady yet gentle force. Fortuit gets down and dirty on the Rock and Funk sections, but is sensitive enough to let space work its intimate magic between the players. On this release, Stuck’s talent and ingenuity bring disparate styles and sounds together to give the listener a pure, whole Fusion voice that’s remarkably rich in color and texture.

Additional Info

  • Artist / Group Name: Stuck
  • CD Title: Were Stuck
  • Genre: Fusion
  • Year Released: 2002
  • Record Label: Sticky Mess Music
  • Musicians: Chisa – Voice, Pat Cahill – Chapman Stick and Trumpet, Alex Fortuit – Drums and Percussion, Matt Pavolka – Electric and Acoustic Bass and Trombone.
  • Rating: Four Stars
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