by Hazmat ModineHazmat Modine


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Hazmat Modine's first album, 2006's Bahamut, earned a placing in the Billboard blues chart. Five years later, the band's second, Cicada, might be more appropriately slotted in the magazine's traditional jazz chart. Truthfully, however, Hazmat Modine present an eclectic mixture of roots styles that is nearly beyond category. Bandleader Wade Schuman sings in an expressive adenoidal tenor and fronts a group dominated by both familiar and less frequently employed horns (Joe Daley plays sousaphone and tuba) in what might be called a "Ry Cooder meets the Dirty Dozen Brass Band" manner. But that's only the core of the sound, which also includes other unusual instruments and found sounds. The instrumental "In Two Years," for example, combines a haunting trumpet refrain, odd percussion, and the sounds of fireworks. Schuman can turn to traditional blues, as he does on "Buddy," which has a "St. James Infirmary" feel to it, and to conventional old-school R&B, on "I've Been Lonely for So Long." But even on such tracks, he changes things up, letting the horns weave in and out as he sings in a mannered, slightly tongue-in-cheek style, like Tom Waits in a higher key. The danger with such self-consciously mixed-up revivalist music is of course that it can come off as something of a joke, but Schuman and company are too accomplished as players for that; they are having a lot of fun, not just being funny. No wonder they have attracted prominent guests like Natalie Merchant, who blends into the group vocals on "Child of a Blind Man," and the Kronos Quartet, who make of the closing track, "Dead Crow," a hybrid of country hoedown and contemporary chamber music.

Product Details

Release Date: 05/17/2011
Label: Barbes
UPC: 0881626939222
catalogNumber: 31
Rank: 86482


  1. Mocking Bird
  2. Child of a Blind Man
  3. Two Forty Seven
  4. Cicada
  5. Buddy
  6. In Two Years
  7. I've Been Lonely For So Long
  8. The Tide
  9. Ebb Tide
  10. Walking Stick
  11. So Glad
  12. Cotonou Stomp
  13. Dead Crow

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Hazmat Modine   Primary Artist
Elaine Caswell   Vocals
Hank Dutt   Viola
Steve Elson   Clarinet,Piccolo,Baritone Saxophone,Soprano Saxophone,Tenor Saxophone,Contra-alto Clarinet
David Harrington   Violin
Scott Lehrer   Vocals
Natalie Merchant   Vocals
Catherine Russell   Vocals
John Sherba   Violin
Erik Della Penna   Guitar,Vocals,Hand Clapping
Alexis Bloom   Vocals
Bill Barrett   Vocals,Chromatic Harmonica
Alexander Fedoriouk   Cimbalom
Reut Regev   Trombone
Magloire Ahouandjinou   Trumpet,Vocals
Martial Ahouandjinou   Trombone,Vocals
Benoît Avihoue   Percussion,Vocals
Athanase Dehoumon   Flugelhorn,Vocals
Lucien Gbaguidi   Saxophone,Vocals
Crespin Kpitiki   Percussion,Vocals
James Vodounnon   Sousaphone,Vocals
Jeffrey Zeigler   Cello
Wade Schuman   Guitar,Vocals,Hand Clapping
Pete Smith   Guitar,Vocals
Michael Gomez   Guitar,Balalaika,shamisen,Lap Steel Guitar,Electric Mando Cello,Guitar (Resonator)
Michael Farkas   Vocals,Hand Clapping
Pam Fleming   Trumpet
Eric Yovogan   Trumpet,Vocals
Richard Livingston Huntley   Drums,Gong,talking drum,Log Drums
Joseph Daley   Tuba,Sousaphone

Technical Credits

Irving Berlin   Composer
Steve Elson   Arranger
Scott Lehrer   Producer,Engineer
Paul Antonell   Engineer
Sal Mormando   Engineer
Jacob Garchik   Arranger,String Arrangements
J. Daley   Composer
Alex Venguer   Engineer
Wade Schuman   Arranger,Producer,Paintings
Scott Fraser   Engineer
Anya Rozhdestvenskaya   Layout
M. Gomez   Composer
Jean-Pierre Roy   Images
Mikael Djossou   Engineer
Roland Böffgen   Engineer

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