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Tom Recchion - I Love My Organ

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Artist: Tom Recchion

Album: I Love My Organ

Label: Birdman

Review date: Jun. 27, 2004

Don’t we all? The blizzard of insecurity-mongering penis enlargement advertisements swamping email boxes notwithstanding, there’s a lot of phallic love around, and the booklet that accompanies Tom Recchion’s new CD makes good on the title’s promise with a plethora of not-too-sublimated erectile images. All in good fun, mind you, just like his music; Recchion’s second album of souped-up organ improvisations overflows with good humor. Clattering beats spin around “Dubby Struts In Trenchtown,” one of a series of rhythm studies for sampler, in a rollicking manner that owes at least as much to ’60s kiddie TV themes (the booklet also includes quotes attributed to Mister Rogers and Herman Munster) as it does to ’70s reggae.

Even Organ’s darkest moments, such as the throw-your-popcorn-in-the-air hysterical Jad Fair tribute “It Walks Through Walls,” have a silver lining of mirth. Nearly half of the album’s 15 tracks bear a dedication – Recchion’s not one to withhold honor wherever it’s due. He has a knack for tipping the hat in a way that incorporates the honoree’s modus operandi without being enslaved by it. Inevitably, “Terry Riley In Rome” is a whirl of loops strung round an organ voice that’s straight out of Poppy Nogood, but the jaunty accordion and trebly guitar are more hypothetical than authentic. (The question “what if Riley had to supply the music to a café scene in a Fellini movie?” is answered in fine fashion.) Recchion also embraces that most inauthentic of musics, exotica, on the infectious sampler fest “Psst-samba.”

I Love My Organ’s main sticking point is an over-reliance on roller-rink tonalities. We know that thing can do more than one trick, so why, one might ask, would Recchion do the same one over and over? No need to clear your throat here, gentlemen; its hardly secret knowledge that one repeats self-indulgent acts because they feel so good.

By Bill Meyer

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