Niacin - Deep

Year of Release: 2000
Label: Magna Carta
Catalog Number: MA 9048-2
Format: CD
Total Time: 62:51:00

It's almost unbelievable, yet the unknown to me Niacin delivers its fourth release with their brand-new Deep. Mainly based on instrumental fusion and strongly emphasized by Hammond B3, performed here by John Novello, you get the kind of music pioneered by people such as Jimmy McGriff, Jack McDuff and even Booker T. After releasing Niacin, High Bias and a Japanese live album, Deep is another complete surprise from the land of improvisation.

A song like "Best Laid Plains" is made from the right ingredients, featuring that throbbing sound of the Hammond, loads of drum breaks courtesy of Dennis Chambers, plus the funky bass of none other than Billy "The Monster" Sheehan. The latter toured with the likes of David Lee Roth, Mr. Big and Talas, and places the bass lines up front in many Niacin compositions. The rest of the songs are written around this bass line, such as the ominous "Sugar Blues." There's a lot of The Nice, Gentle Giant and King Crimson inside a song like "Stompin' Ground," including some outstanding drum work from Chambers who has worked with Chick Corea, Steely Dan, Parliament, Funkadelic and James Brown to name but a few.

"Blue Mondo" is somewhere between Deep Purple and Planet X, Jon Lord meets Derek Sherinian. An impressive bass solo mimics the intro for Van Halen's "Mean Streets." What Eddie Van Halen did on his guitar, Billy "translates" onto bass. In order to diversify a little, in come guitarist Steve Lukather and vocalist Glenn Hughes. The bluesy "Things Ain't Like They Used To Be" might not be 100 % along the same lines as the rest of the material, but it shows a relaxed Hughes lifting this song to bluesy lonesome heights thanks to his unique voice. Lovers of prog/fusion/bluesy Hammond should take out their yellow marker to highlight the name Niacin NOW!

Swing Swang Swung (3:48) / Best Laid Plains (4:25) / Sugar Blues (5:50) / Stompin' Ground (5:03) / Blue Mondo (5:56) / Panic Button (5:37) / Bootleg Jeans (7:00) / Mean Streets (5:37) / This One's Called ? (3:46) / Klunkified (2:58) / Ratta Mcque (3:48) / Things Ain't Like They Used To Be (7:25) / Bluesion (4:18)

Billy Sheehan - bass, rhythm guitar
John Novello - Hammond B3, piano, Fender Rhodes
Dennis Chambers - drums


Glenn Hughes - vocals
Steve Lukather - guitar

Niacin (1996)
Live In Japan (1997)
High Bias (1998)
Deep (2000)
Time Crunch (2001)
Niacin Live! Blood, Sweat and Beers (2003)
Organik (2005)

Genre: Fusion-Jazz Fusion

Origin US

Added: March 1st 2000
Reviewer: John "Bobo" Bollenberg

Artist website:
Hits: 917
Language: english


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