Indigo Jam Unit Give Us Jazz Through ‘Rose’ Tinted Glasses

I have a strange relationship with jazz music. Even though it's had a huge impact on the soul (and hip-hop) music I love, I just can't seem to get on with it -- well the traditional sort at least. Sure there are exceptions to the rule, usually of the more soulful variety (Dinah Washington, Sarah Vaughn and the like, Nina Vidal and José James are a few), but when someone recommends the latest, greatest jazz release to me my eyes and ears tend to glaze over. That said, when Rose, from Japanese outfit Indigo Jam Unit, landed in my inbox curiosity got the better of me and I gave it a spin, and I'm certainly glad I did. Accompanied by talented Trinidadian vocalist Alicia Saldenha, Indigo Jam Unit go the same route they did on re:common (an album of Common remixes), and choose to cover/re-imagine existing songs. Nina Simone's "Funkier Than A Mosquito's Tweeter" is probably the most recognizable cover of the six-track collection, but it was the surprise appearance of Alice Clarke's "Never Did I Stop Loving You" -- a little-known personal favorite -- which convinced me that I had to load this on the iPod immediately. All six songs are expertly crafted, and Alicia shows up and shows out especially on a cover of Vince Andrews' "The One Who Needs You." Check out a video of them performing that track below and keep your eyes and ears peeled for the release of Rose in early September.

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