It's a Wonderful Life

It's a Wonderful Life

by Nine Men's Morris



Some artists get all of their inspiration from one particular era; in the 21st century, it isn't hard to find bands that act like they haven't heard anything that was recorded before 1990. Nine Men's Morris, however, turns to different eras for musical inspiration, and that outlook generally serves the alternative pop
ock/adult alternative threesome well on their first album, It's a Wonderful Life. The New York City residents obviously identify with the more tuneful and melodic side of alterna-rock; they certainly aren't immune to the charms of Ben Folds Five, Weezer, the Gin Blossoms, or Oasis. But to fully appreciate where Nine Men's Morris are coming from on this 2004 release: One needs to go back a generation and know who some of their pre-'90s and even pre-'80s influences are -- influences (perhaps direct, perhaps indirect) that range from Big Star to Elvis Costello to the Beatles (whose unending affect on rock music is quite amazing when you consider that the Fab Four parted company in 1970). Another baby boomer influence one hears on this CD is Chicago -- an influence that might be considered unhip in some circles, but an influence that is creatively advantageous on It's a Wonderful Life (which was co-produced by Vaneese Thomas, a daughter of Memphis soul icon Rufus Thomas and sibling of Carla Thomas). Chicago, for all their slickness and commercialism, wrote some great songs; they had a fine sense of pop
ock craftsmanship, and the traces of Chicago that ones hears on parts of this album only add to its artistic health. Even so, It's a Wonderful Life falls short of perfect. Many of the songs are excellent, while a few are merely competent. But on the whole, It's a Wonderful Life leaves a very favorable impression of Nine Men's Morris, and makes listeners want to closely monitor their development.

Product Details

Release Date: 06/29/2004
Label: Segue Records
UPC: 0829757739328
catalogNumber: 4

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Nine Men's Morris   Primary Artist
Vaneese Thomas   Background Vocals
Randy Andos   Trombone
Paul Mariconda   Electric Piano
Wayne Warnecke   Percussion
Bruce McDaniel   Guitar,Keyboards,Vocals
Donald Kyle   Bass,Bass Guitar,Vocals
Perry Gartner   Drums,Vocals
Keyontia Hawkins   Vocals,Background Vocals
Michael Greenspan   Piano

Technical Credits

Andrew Gold   Composer
Vaneese Thomas   Producer,Audio Production
Wayne Warnecke   Producer,Engineer,Audio Production
Bob Defrin   Art Direction
John Halpern   Cover Photo
Nine Men's Morris   Producer
Bruce McDaniel   Composer,Engineer
Todd Spire   Art Direction

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