Saturday, April 14, 2007
Madrid-based sextet Racalmuto has released a self-titled CD containing six Raymond Scott Quintette tunes: "Powerhouse," "The Penguin," "Happy Farmer," "Moment Musical," "Steeplechase," and "Square Dance for Eight Egyptian Mummies."
The Scott evocations are joyous and brash, mixing nicely with the band's originals and nuggets by Stuff Smith and Charlie Shavers. The Scott covers sizzle with élan. In paying homage to the RSQ tradition, Racalmuto adds inventive touches that surprise and impress. But don't overlook their composer chops: pianist Pascual Piqueras's "¿Quién Quiere un Tornado?" evokes elegant 1930s modernism and classic cartoon jazz (an equally apt description of the original RSQ); and clarinetist Marco Cresci's "Ataque de Celos en Zakopane" conjures a swing-era outer space fantasy.
Update: Here they perform Scott's "Powerhouse" on Spanish TV.