F.F.O: (For fans of): Barflies, classic blues and jazz, and the movie Swingers.
From Cool Cleveland Managing Editor Peter Chakerian peterATcoolcleveland.com
The Rhythm Syndicate / 2006
Review from CoolCleveland.com:
A cup of laid back blues. Another cup of jazzy. Two tablespoons of swing. A little bit 'o soul. Add a whole lotto rhythm & blues. Then turn up the heat nice and easy.
Sound like a winning recipe to you? Then it's a safe bet that The Rhythm Syndicate's self-titled debut is for you. With 10 years gigging experience behind them, The Rhythm Syndicate really knows how to get things cooking. They may be the most underrated R&B band in town.
With a zippy, playful chemistry and grooves that recall the cosmopolitan cool of Chicago's best blues clubs and shades of Motown, the band slides coolly into The Rhythm Syndicate's 12 tracks, opening with the instrumental "Barfly Blues." The lazy lead then gives way to the party vibes of "Too Much Information," "Sunny Day," and "Crawdaddy Walk" and "Funk-O-Matic" - all of which have a distinct brassy feel and party atmosphere. The cool funk and jazz roots of "Soul Steppin'," and "Tip Top," which shimmers with a clarinet lead, round out the best of the tracks.
Vocalist/guitarist Pat Sandy and the rest of the gang - Angelo Ciu (guitar), Kevin Dyckes (tenor sax/bass guitar), Doug Hopkins (tenor sax/clarinet) and John Yencha (drums) - have the fire and energy of an upstart band with something to prove. The instrumentation is all perfectly mixed; even the strategically placed ballad "You Never Know" seems to offer emotional countermeasure at just the right time. And yet they're cozy and comfortable, like a house band, with Sandy's laid back singing setting the tone. They can be my "jump blues' house band anytime.