‘Ska Royale’ from the Copacetics

You haven’t heard of the Copacetics?  Well, this 8-piece from Rhode Island has dropped a new album entitled ‘Ska Royale.’  Let’s have a listen…

 

  1. “Ska Royale”- Let’s get things rollin’ with a fantastic instrumental. The saxophone never sounded smoother!  Grade: A-

 

  1. “Que Sera Sera”- Another great traditional number is found in this horn-driven ditty. .  The lead singer’s voice is a sharp contrast to the well-harmonized backing vocals, which works really well.  Grade: A-

 

  1. “Woman of My Dreams”- Even for a traditional ska tune, this one’s a bit on the slower side. Instrumentally, there are a lot of great things going on, but overall, the song failed to hold my attention.  Grade: B

 

  1. “Six Outta Seven”- It is rare when even a long-time ska fan such as my self thinks that a song is worthy of a music video. I picture a dude pleading with his girlfriend to have just one night with the boys.  Intersect this with the band playing at a bar with the “boys” in the crowd.  Excellent song which highlights a bluesy guitar riff and a more prominent low roar of the organ.   Grade: A

 

  1. “Climb on Up”- This one carries over from the last song. I picture the same bar from the last song, at closing time.  The band slow things down while the bartender cleans up and the patrons head out.  A solid tune.  Grade: B+

 

  1. “No Fool”- “No Fool” will put a little hop in your step. The Copacetics dish out the most light-hearted song thus far.  A big thumbs up on the steel drum solo (definitely the first time I’ve heard this used in a ska song).    Grade: B+

 

  1. “The Vulture”- I’m really digging “The Vulture” with its many musical elements all rolled into one song. On the surface, it is another traditional instrumental, but I hear bits of surf with glimpses of spaghetti western and sci-fi.  Nice job guys!  Grade: A

 

  1. “I Ain’t Got No Cookies”- For some reason, I had a hard time taking this one seriously. Again, the instrumentation was top notch, but I just wasn’t a fan of the lyrics.  Grade: B

 

  1. “Rainy Night”- Cue the background storm sounds! In general, I really love this song, albeit a slower number, although it sounds like it was recorded in a tunnel.  The backing vocals here really add that extra oomph.    Grade: A-

 

  1. “Lovin’ Man”- Matt Di Chiari’s classic raspiness really shines here. Otherwise, more Copacetics goodness.  Grade: B+

 

  1. “Long Cold”- “Long Cold” is decent song, but with nothing here that stands out from the pack. Grade: B

 

  1. “Wreck a Pum Pum”- Being that we are so close to Christmas, I really enjoyed how much this song reminded me of “Little Drummer Boy.” Grade: A-

 

  1. “Anymore”- The closing track was just alright for me. Grade: B

 

If you are tired of spinning the same ska punk CDs on your worn out player and are ready to get your traditional fix on, then look no further.  After releasing a thoroughly enjoyable set of tunes in last year’s self-titled album, The Copacetics have done it again.  With a ‘B’ being the lowest grade that I gave out, overall this is a great album from start to finish. The groundwork of The Copacetic’s sound is rooted in traditional ska, but there are also elements of both jazz and blues as well, not to mention a prominent big band feel.  Lead vocalist Matt Chiari’s distinctive voice, sounds like no one else in the biz and pairs nicely with the otherwise smooth instrumentation.  Definitely horn-driven in nature, the guitar and the organ get their time to shine as well over the course of 13 tracks.  Generally more swanky than your typical traditional fare, ‘Ska Royale’ does not sound like you are listening to a recording but rather you are listening to the band live.  This band may be in a bar, on a rainy street or out West.     Great stuff!  If you’re ready to roll the dice on some new tunes, then give Ska Royale a try!

 

Overall Grade: B+

 

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