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Friday, Nov. 3, 2006


Stanton Moore "III"

Not many recordings have been made in New Orleans since Hurricane Katrina, but fewer still have been made in that special sanctuary of trad jazz, Preservation Hall, the run-down mecca of old-time jazz. Drummer Stanton Moore, though, took the postdisaster break in the tourist action to drag his very nontraditional band there to knock out a pumped-up set of full-on soul jazz.

Long a staple of the New Orleans scene, Moore here delivers his best drumming yet, dragging a tight, funky trio into the old Hall to create a set of nimble, rollicking blues, funk and jazz gumbo. Guitarist Will Bernard displays jazz touches and a genuine feel for melody. Keyboard maestro Robert Walter throws plenty of grease on the fire with his Hammond B3. It's maybe the first time the Hall has ever had electric instruments within its four walls, but it sounds like they've always been hidden somewhere in the back all along. On the funky raveup "(Don't Be Comin' with No) Weak Sauce," the band digs right into Moore's double-time breaks and marching New Orleans meters. The covers of "When the Levee Breaks" and the traditional "I Shall Not Be Moved" end the otherwise wild session with Sunday-morning dignity.

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