Album: Larry McDonald, Drumquestra (MCPR)

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The Independent Culture

McDonald is a venerable Jamaican-born percussionist and this is his downstage moment. Over a 40-year career he has recorded with Gil Scott-Heron and Jackie DeShannon, so is not to be regarded as a one-trick pony. And so it proves on this largely enjoyable trip around a world of teeming rhythms, recorded both in Larry's homeland and NYC. The presence of such JA heavies as Sly Dunbar and Toots Hibbert cannot disguise the essential New Yorkiness of the album, nor compensate for the lack of songwriting. But songs are hardly the point.