How do you characterize Galactic? Jazz? Funk? Roots? R n’ B? All of the above? Galactic has been through a wide progression of “all of the above” over their 20 years of performing that also included forays into rock, electronic/dance and rap/hip-hop.
New Orleans, based Galactic appeared at the Live Wire in Scottsdale on March 2, 2016, in support of their 2015 release Into the Deep. On this tour Galactic appears to be returning to their roots of primarily jazz and funk. In a set that seemed about evenly split between instrumental and songs accompanied by vocalist Erica Falls, the band definitely brought a lot of the funk that it’s traditional been known for to Live Wire.
Through multiple line-up changes over the years, Galactic is back to founding guitarist Jeff Raines, bassist Robert Mercurio, drummer Stanton Moore, Hammond organist Rich Vogel, saxophonist Ben Ellman and regular trombonist Corey Henry. This is a tight, well-rehearsed group of musicians that are clearly comfortable playing with, and off of, each other.
The band was solid. The concert was solid. If you like jazz and funk, and clearly Galactic’s audience does, this was a concert to really enjoy. Galactic delivered a full set of non-stop, no-banter, jam-band jazz and funk for their entire set and Galactic’s fans were clearly very appreciative.
Photos and review by Greg Cohen
Photos © Greg Cohen 2016