Artist: The Loch Ness Mouse
Title: Jazz Mouse EP
Label: Arkhangelsk Recordings
Format: 7” vinyl (limited hand numbered edition of 300)
Genre: Jazz, jazz fusion
We don’t review enough jazz here on Tuning Into Obscure, which is a shame considering how many jazz records I have sitting in a pile. So why not start with this one?
Norwegian jazz fusion masters, The Loch Ness Mouse, release this single off of their LP, “New Graffiti.” It features a track from the album itself and a unique track made especially for this release.
Side A: According to the handy info sheet included on this release, this track is inspired by Brecht’s “Buddha’s Parable of the Burning House,” a poem of sorts from 1949. And, lyrically, this song reflects that rather well and I have to give the band quite a few points for writing a song about something like this. It’s not often I come across this subject in music. On that note, the music itself sounds a bit like a mix of krautrock, jazz, indie rock and electronic music. It’s an interesting blend and works on all fronts.
Side B: Exclusive to this release, “Kunming” is dedicated to the Chinese city of the same name and its people the band met while visiting. The track itself opens with a zippy beat and precise synth. A lively sax takes control and in cooperation with guitars and guides the track along. It’s superb, honestly. It reflects on the great elements of jazz while remaining vibrant and entrancing. This is an awesome track.
Final thoughts? If you’ve never really explored jazz or jazz fusion, this is a great place to start. It’s accessible and a lot of fun. The lyrics on the A-side are flawless and the instrumental B-side is excellent. I would urge you to support both this band and the label and score a copy before they run out!
4.7 out of 5.