Short wave has been around for a long time. But, Detroit-area songwriter, Greg Utech, has given the radio communication term a new meaning. Utech’s compact disc entitled Spank has meshed artistry and technology to bring forth a musical offering that’s both impressive and innovative.
Stepping away from typical production, Utech uses a fluent mixture of unique sounds from untraditional sources such as short wave radio, audio travelogues and sound-snippet archives blended with electronics and conventional musical instruments. Jazz and techno fans alike will want this CD in their collection.
The title track, “Spank” is a jazz lover’s delight with Walt Szymanski’s wailing trumpet backed by a funky beat. “Mark’s Boat Trip” takes you on your own journey with its driving foundation and Sheila Landis’ haunting vocals. And “Bushmonkey” is a sobering commentary on the chaos of our world. Spank is a music and sound experiment that evokes a wide array of human emotions. Recording artist Joe Henry said of Utech’s work, “I’m a sucker for that sonic palate...I’m entertained.”
Greg Utech – drums, percussion, keyboard, piano, autoharp, strings, trumpet, penny whistle, shortwave
Rick Matle – guitar, bass, percussion, shortwave
Phil Kelly – piano, Wurlitzer, Rhodes, strings, percussion, microcassette
Mark Rutkowski – voice/Bali field recordings
Walt Szymanski – trumpet (“Spank”)
Sheila Landis – vocals (“Mark’s Boat Trip”)
John Palen – alto sax (“Return of the Bobs”)