From their inception nearly two decades ago in Leeds, UK, The New Mastersounds have wholeheartedly embraced the “old school” label—their sound rooted deeply in those classic soul jazz, boogaloo and funk albums on labels such as Blue Note and Prestige by artists like Wes Montgomery, Jimmy Smith, Jimmy McGriff and Lou Donaldson. The New Mastersounds’ latest LP, The Nashville Session, takes that devotion one step further by recording in the same tradition that many of those rare groove gems were made. The 10-track collection, cut at Welcome To 1979 studio in Nashville, was multi-tracked live onto one-inch tape in a single evening session in front of a small studio audience. Following the performance the recording was mixed down to quarter-inch stereo and then cut direct to vinyl lacquers. There are no guests and no overdubs, just bass, drums, guitar and organ—essentially pure New Mastersounds.
Hitting the studio at the tail end of their Fall and Winter 2015 cross-country U.S. tour, the band was razor sharp and vise tight. They selected material to record from across their 16-plus year career and ten studio albums. The lone exception being their take on legendary jazz guitarist Grant Green’s arrangement of James Brown’s “In The Middle.” The results from top to bottom are gritty, greasy and funky to the bone. The effort was first released exclusively on vinyl via a limited edition 1000-piece pressing. Six months later the album was released on CD in Japan by P-Vine Records and on digital worldwide by the band’s own imprint, One Note Records. The Nashville Session presents The New Mastersounds at their finest, full-on analogue and unapologetically doing it old-school.