CD REVIEW: Soulfarm - Scream of the Crop
By Ben Ohmart - 05/18/2001 - 04:42 PM EDT
Album: Scream of the Crop
Soulfarm is an acoustic harmony group with more talent in its 3 white guys than what most submarines contain. C Lanzbom is main guitar, and voice. Noah Solomon Chase is main voice, and guitar. Mark Ambrosino is rhythm, and further voice. Together, they build bridges from Latin swing (‘The Ride’) to CSN-style barbershop stops (‘Why Must We Wait’). Okay, they have several guest musicians, and stretch the adult contemporary/easy listening lite rock genres even further than that.
Take the backing voices from ‘Shake Well,’ which could easily be stolen from a mid-career Police track, especially with that fast-walking beat. It’ll remind you of some of the Beach Boys’ 70s years too. What more could you want?
Noah has a pleasant, upwardly mobile voice that eases right in to Lanzbom’s very worldly guitar style. My first venture into Lanzbom’s shinny talent came from his Meditations cd last year, in which he sharpened up new age to get under the skin of Pop. Of course, once he comes back to the group that made him famous, the voices are just as ginger, vigilant and priceless as the model guitar work.
In the guise of a band called Inasense, Soulfarm have released a few cds before, have toured for a number of years, and have worked hard to evoke this mollifying folk music for the New Generation. Raves in newspapers like the Philadelphia Inquirer and CMJ New Music Report have only written up what fans have been saying for a while. High intensity, quiet rock: the kind of sound easily dwarfed in today’s pop-crazy, glam-infested over the top recklessness. Good to hear craftsmen again who are careful, who make the music by hand.
15 songs and over an hour’s worth of music. Everything’s written by the 3, therefore the love really shines out. Tunesmiths. Soulfarm really attempts – and mostly succeeds – to bring back an element of yesterday with playing that’s frankly better than the early 60s from which Chase, Lanzbom and Ambrosino pull out references and set down afresh.
For peaceful souls – try it out.
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