Having emerged as a vibrant musical force with their previous effort WMM-PRR, 75 Dollar Bill have spent the last few years bringing their music to new places and people with their dedication to performance in venues of all shapes and sizes. The fruits of this work can be heard here on their expansive new album I Was Real.
The album, its title’s origin a jumbled misremembering of the lesser-known Motown song “He Was Really Saying Something,” is 75 Dollar Bill’s third, featuring new directions accompanying the band’s previously established interest in sprawling, unusual grooves and microtonal melodies. The record is enhanced by the presence of eight additional players in various combinations over its nine tracks but also shows off the duo’s strength when stripped down to the core.
The NYC based duo of Rick Brown and Che Chen, creates hypnotic, pulsing music that weaves an ecstatic line from raw electric blues, Arabic modes and entrancing folk minimalism back to the streets of New York. Instrumentation expanded, palette widened and canvas doubled. The third album from these acclaimed NYC mainstays adds concise rockers, fuller orchestrations and mysterious textures to the band’s long, odd/deep grooves and microtonal tunings.