A Place In The Sun
Months short of his 70th birthday, the Night Tripper has brewed up some gumbo weirder, thicker and more rhythmic than any since his 20s. Only the seven-minute title centerpiece recalls the eerie backwoods voodoo-dub ritual of 1968's Gris-Gris. But the funk stays deep, varying into Southern soul, boogie rock, quiet storm and saxed-out Latin jazz. Several songs address the state of the nation, especially the growing wealth gap, with an eco-mysticism that nods to Sun Ra, Captain Beefheart, maybe Gil Scott-Heron. It helps that Dr. John sounded like a wise old man even when he was young.