Canadian band, Bullfrog, are one of those treasures rarely and often accidentally discovered by collectors such as myself. I can't remember exactly where I got it, but listening back to it for this review, I'm surprised it hasn't been played lots more as it really is a great record of funk, off-kilter pop, jazz and hip hop and is ostensibly a live recording.
Mine and YourZ (truly) have been watching a great new HBO series called Treme, which is about the lives of various New Orleans inhabitants immediately after Cyclone Katrina. Of course, the biggest star of the show is the music, that of the Orleans funk and more traditional jazz and cajun blues. Bullfrog sound like they could be one of the house bands for any of the venues featured in the show, such is the richness of texture and sheer talent of this band.
For this reason, among many, this is another Forgotten Gem
VERDICT: TURN IT UP
...and here we have the split between us, once again. I hadn't really listened to Bullfrog before, even though it's been played a bit in our house, because it's generally been background to parties or just to living. So I was surprised when I didn't really like it.
There are two reasons for this. First is because they're another band who feel they have to mention their name in just about every song. I mean, what? Don't you think I can read the CD cover? Do I have short-term memory loss? What was the question again?
And secondly, although they're a great band with some really catchy tunes - none of the songs seem to actually go anywhere. There's a lot of noodling and clever stuff, but largely it lacks structure. It had the editor in me reaching for the red pen, so I could cross out this bit and that bit and move this one around there and then how about we tighten up here and...
Nice background music, but for a close-up listen, a tad self-indulgent.
VERDICT: TURN IT DOWN
For more information: http://www.gobullfrog.com/