Eugene Chadbourne

The Chadbourne Luck, Vol. 1

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The Chadbourne Luck is a series of two CDs (sold separately) culling solo performances of jazz standards by the Good Doctor. Some really are "standard" standards (i.e., interpreted in close relation to the original), like "Monk's Dream," "They Can't Take That Away From Me," or even "In a Sentimental Mood." But Chadbourne being who he is, one can expect him to trail off a number of times. It happens particularly in Monk's "52nd St. Theme" and Coltrane's "Naima," where he steps on his distortion pedal and dives into a noisy soundscape -- those who hear the tune's melody must be on drugs. Sound quality is very poor -- some of the live recordings are ridden with audience noises. For those who can get over that, his playing is interesting. His "Bach Partita" on acoustic guitar is quite impressive by itself. Those who can't stand the sound of a musician humming the melody while he plays, stay away. The same applies for those looking for the zany side of Chadbourne. The Chadbourne Luck (either volume) will appeal to the fan of his jazz side, and even then it can only be considered a very minor addition to a considerable discography, it's an item for the completist.