As soon as the play button is pressed, the thing that hits me instantly about this record is just how GOOD it sounds. I could be forgiven for thinking a modern, funky jazz band had just set up in my living area were it not for the fact there is not enough room! Every nuance, every beat, every stabbing piano chord and bassline is crystal clear. This gives the record such immense depth, space and soul.
This instantly likeable factor is essential for Caroline’s Capuchin, because instrumental Latin jazz fusion workouts could so easily fly over most people’s heads! The fact it is accessible to everybody is testament to the talent and song-writing craftsmanship the band deliver. Like the greatest composers (Beethoven, Mozart, Holst, Gershwin, Lennon, Mercury etc) the ability to produce music that satisfies both the intellectual musician and the everyday man in need of some no-brainer chillout music after a hard day at work is Caroline’s greatest strength.
There is so much to absorb on this record. A plethora of engaging hooks, usually from the piano, all underpinned by some incredible drum and bass grooves and a whole host of additional percussive, dance rhythms. Almost silent moments of meandering subtlety give way to huge, purposefully driven and bombastic bass-heavy grooves.
Different musical journeys often intertwine and collide; musical genres are fused together to seamless effect making everything seem so natural. Often teetering on the edge, the band still has the foresight and discipline to know when to hold back from becoming just another noisy mess of finite musical elitism.
On occasion, some of ‘For What?’ does steer dangerously close to wine bar music, but like the song-titles, their apparent sense of humour would suggest that this is all part of some elaborate in-joke. Ironically, pour a glass of Chianti and put this on during a dinner party and Caroline’s Capuchin works perfectly, although I still prefer to crank it up, close my eyes and believe the band are back in the living room.
Suffice to say, ‘For What?’ is an incredible album that I would recommend to anybody in need of something that actually is a bit different.