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Dec312011

'Clearlight' - Directions in Groove [album review]

DIRECTIONS IN GROOVE (DIG) – Clearlight
(Universal/ABC Music)

Written by Krissi Weiss

Directions In Groove were most active during the ‘90s when their unique blend of acid-jazz, funk and groove-based music was splashing itself all over Sydney, Australia, and beyond to international stages.

Dig have always been musician’s musicians, creating songs that may not always be “easy” to listen to, but are always skilfully expressed.  Drummer, Terepai Richmond, is perhaps his country’s greatest jazz/funk drummer and the band have created melodic mayhem around his infectious rhythms.

Almost 20 years after their inception, Dig have released 'Clearlight'. With a fairly quiet ten years on the recording front with only one live album released this century, Dig are masters at their craft and continue to make mind blowing music.  The addition of vocalist Laura Stitt to the line-up, however, is their only questionable decision.  She is a fantastic jazz-influenced vocalist, but the tracks that she features on are the weakest on 'Clearlight'.  Dig are at their best when the well-crafted yet almost chaotic melodies of Tim Rollinson and Rick Robertson are allowed to run free from the traditional shackles of a dominant vocal melody.

Dig have had some impressive vocalists join them in the past (Toni Mott and Inja Liljestrom among many others) but the traditional structure of a verse/chorus vocal melody has never been the moments where Dig truly shine.  The instrumental tracks on this album are great on their own and do not need vocal accompaniment, but ultimately, Dif are as funky as ever, even after all these years!

This article was originally published in Rave Magazine http://www.ravemagazine.com.au/

Reader Comments (2)

I didn't heard them songs until now, so what their genre? I always listen to the bands songs for specific genre.

Shelena | Compliance Posters

January 11, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterShelena

I would say free-jazz/acid jazz. Late night music if you have a little bit of dance left in you ;)

January 13, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterKrissi Weiss

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