Robert Walter’s 20th Congress, “Spacesuit” (Royal Potato Family)

cover-rw20c-spacesuit-1024x1024Considering the name of the album, Spacesuit, and the musicians involved—organist/multi-keyboardist Robert Walter, drummer Simon Lott, guitarist Chris Alford and bassist Victor Little plus percussionist Mike Dillon—one can anticipate progressively stylistic and aggressive music throughout the new release. Sure it has some space cadet moments, though as heard on the first cut, “Nerva and Dumbo,” the result of this combination of talent is that they bring on the funk and are aware of the importance of melody.

The band kind of rocks out on the short but inspired “Modifier,” one of two cuts jointly composed by the members of the group. The rest all come from Walter’s sharp pen.

Alford’s guitar takes the lead on another funky number, “Chalk Giant,” which moves with a groove similar to Johnny Otis’ “Willie and the Hand Jive.” The guitarist trades bars with Walter’s organ on this strong tune that ends with—perhaps obligatory—spacey electronics.

Walter’s tremendous organ is way out front on an album highlight, “Most of All of Us,” which just keeps building, driven by the drums of Simon Lott, who, as always, is amazingly inventive and involved throughout the release. Yeah, you can dance to this powerful selection, though it requires some pretty fancy footwork.

To end the journey, Spacesuit floats in electronics while wrapped in its “Electric Blanket.” It’s a suitable way to return to the comforts of earth where, for the most part, these primarily New Orleans artists live and musically augment the universe.