Dirty Dozen Brass Band

Open Up (Whatcha Gonna Do for the Rest of your Life)

Columbia, 1991

The DDBB manages to show off something new each album. This time, it's the compositional abilities of the band members that are most on display; except for the closer, "Eyomzi" by the late Johnny Dyani, all the tunes here are written by the band. Inexplicably, a kit drummer replaces their standard two-person snare/ bass drum percussion section on several songs; no real harm is done, but little is gained. Trumpeter Gregory Davis contributes the moody suite "The Lost Souls (Of Southern Louisiana)", which starts out slow and funereal, then turns into something reminiscent of the Dozen's arrangement of "Caravan", and finally builds into a fast, furious, extra-funky parade rhythm. Another highlight is Roger Lewis' solo baritone sax piece, "Song for Lady M". Elsewhere we have some very tight ensemble horn riffs, hot solos, and the world's funkiest tuba player. We even have the Dozen's version of a reggae beat on "Dominique". I have trouble imagining how anyone could not like the Dirty Dozen.

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