Drummer Wally Schnalle's recordings are always quite intriguing and full of unexpected moments.
There are times on Physics & Magic when one might think that this is a particularly creative David Sanborn release due to altoist Charles McNeal's tone sometimes sounding close to Sanborn's and the rhythms being funky.
However, Schnalle's rhythms are never predictable, he uses electronic loops quite inventively, and there is nothing simplistic about his music. "Physics & Magic" effectively utilizes a spoken word loop while other selections could almost be classified as avant funk. Schnalle utilizes the sounds and styles of funky jazz and rockish fusion, but often turns them inside out.
Dancing to some of this music would definitely be a challenge. Jeff Massanari contributes some explosive guitar solos, bassist Jason Muscat keeps the music grooving, and McNeal has many fine solos, but it is the colorful and often intense playing of Wally Schnalle (who contributed all eight originals) that really makes this a memorable effort.
Chris LeDoux was born in Mississippi, but his music and lyrics both have plenty of Texas heart -- maybe brought on by the fact that by the time he hit his teens he was already living in Texas, and soon began the normal cowboy path of taking part in rodeos and spending his summers doing ranch work. The recording Chris LeDoux and the Saddle Boogie Band has been called a great cowboy-style album, like most of LeDoux's work. Country fans will find both ballads and upbeat numbers on this offering. Songs such as "Cowboys Like a Little Rock and Roll," "Night Rider's Lament," and "Hooked on an 8 Second Ride" showcase his skill at tapping into the celebrated world of the everyday cowboy that he knows so well and shares even better. All you need to do is tug off your cowboy boots, tip back your hat, get comfortable, and have a nice long listen.