Woo Park – Smokes EP
By Randy Harris
Everything just seems to fit so flawlessly and effortlessly when I listen to Woo Park’s debut release. While I’m sure they are all capable of busting out mind-bending solos (they even get close to it at times in the album), they are wise enough and confident enough in their musical abilities to keep the integrity of the song as the top priority.
The six pieces that make up the band consist of Emily Nichols (vocals), Parker Grogan (bass), Christian Zwit (keyboards, synths), Luke Sangerman (drums), Steve “The Bongo Kid” Rutledge (percussion), and Brian Sanborn (guitar, pedals). The combination of the pieces spits out a contemporary take on jazz that will make the hairs on your arms stand on end, sprinkling just enough funk and hip hop to keep listeners continually groovin’. This particular record, Smokes EP, consists of 9 tracks, a couple of which are short, intro/interlude type jams. The album gives off an extremely chill vibe, with tantalizing bass lines, eyebrow lifting guitar lines, seductive keyboards, and vocals that tug at the heartstrings, all held down by a relentless rhythm section. With the EP’s first single, “Boom Bap,” at the helm, Smokes EP targets the dopamine in all of our brains and releases it into a wave of relaxed elation.
Woo Park celebrates their debut release tonight, December 5, at Martyrs’ in their home town of Chicago with special guest Yojimbo. For more on Woo Park head to their website (http://wooparkgrooves.com/) or check them out on Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/wooparkgrooves) and Twitter (https://twitter.com/wooparkgrooves).