(Press Release Provided by World Records)
The afrofunk acrobats of Mr. Something Something are finally bringing their unabashedly positive high-energy dance therapy to Sault Ste. Marie. The much talked about Toronto collective will unveil new material from its highly anticipated second album at The Downbeat Lounge on Friday, March 4th.
Mr. Something Something represents two years of composing, performing, risk-taking, improving and ultimately mobilizing the original vision of founding members Larry Graves [drums/percussion] and John MacLean[saxophone/voice]. 20 years of playing, studying and traveling passed before these two childhood friends settled on the unbeatable dance rhythms of Nigeria, Senegal, Mali and Ghana as the most natural gathering place for the elements that would ultimately make up the Mr. Something Something sound.
Western instruments and concepts of improvisation are explored and layered over what used to be called afrobeat; but the term strains to contain the innovations happening in the rhythm section at every show. It also fails to express in fiery-enough terms the contributions of notable and electrifying vocalist/performance artist Johan Ivar.
Breaks and basslines are designed to induce and sustain a state of ecstatic dancing. The horn section strikes with power and uplifts with melody. And above it all, acting as a lightning rod for the combined energies of a Mr. Something Something event, is the lyric statement of the case for change and consciousness. And dance.
Mr. Something Something's self-titled debut album was released in July 2004 to critical acclaim. VIEW Magazine called it a "great debut from a solid band" and in EXCLAIM David Dacks wrote "these guys rank with any Afrobeat in the world today." The album was also very well received by campus and community radio across the country, a fact which was confirmed by the National Campus and Community Radio Report in November 2004 when the album climbed high on two of the !Earshot Specialty Charts, reaching number four on the jazz chart and number six on the 'International' ditto. Not bad, considering that the majority of tracks on the album exceed nine minutes!
2004 was an incredible year for Mr. Something Something. Sometimes backed by the four glorious voices of the Ladybird Sideshow, this Toronto collective traveled five provinces, playing 75 shows to enthusiastic crowds, including fundraisers and festivals such as The Beaches International Jazz Festival, The Distillery Jazz Festival and The Car-Free Kensington Street Festival. This Toronto-based collective is currently working on a second album, which will be released in conjunction with the band's Western Canada Tour in the summer of 2005.
Critical acclaim for the Mr. Something Something debut album:
"Afrobeat fans, it's all here: punchy horn riffs, jazzy drums, percolating guitars and percussion galore...these guys rank with any Afrobeat in the world today."
"...a celebration exploding with rich tones and vibrant beats, a throwback to something primal, infectious and seductive with a generous helping of cool jazz sensibility."
- VIEW Magazine
"...West African-based grooves inundated with driving rhythms, catchy vocals, and full-on horns."
- Echo Weekly
Don't tell anyone about www.mrsomethingsomething.com
The Downbeat Lounge is located at 740 Queen Street East (across from PUC). For more information on the Downbeat Lounge, click here.