Seth Yacovone hasn’t been idle in the interim since he disbanded his trio – Seth Yacavone Band – four years ago. In fact, he spent the better part of the most recent winter on his recently released double CD Land of Split Decision, where he enacts a logical progression from his previous blues-based efforts.
The first of the two cd’s truly gets moving when you hear the horns of Andrew Moroz on trombone and saxmen Joe Moore and Zack Tonnisen during "Can’t Get Sick.” Yacovone’s electric guitar spirals ever higher and the band, including long-time drummer Steve Hadeka, Vorcza’s bassist Rob Morse and keyboardist Ray Pazckowski, approaches the boiling point, particularly after the horns return accompanied by a soulful vocal chorus.
In the heartfelt vocal and tart slide guitar within the role-playing of “George,” Split Decision reminds Yacovone’s original group was a blues band. Yet the rootsy approach here goes beyond those influences. Moroz’ horn charts become beautifully intricate on "Terminal." in keeping with the country/reggae changes. The collective headlong hurtle of "A2T!" may be nothing more than a romp, but it’s the lighthearted work of a musician who truly loves to play. Much meatier is "Reap the Reward," where the organ of Pazckowski and the acoustic piano of Charles Eller engage in a furious exchange as Yacovone’s electric guitar again soars heavenward.
The sequencing of this Lane Gibson production is carefully plotted as well. Acoustic slide guitar mix with the banjo and pedal steel of Gordon Stone on “Don’t Retread On Me," providing such an artful contrast with the preceding cut, it prompts the thought Land of Split Decision is a concept album of sorts: the political undercurrent matches the personal expression at work here in both the songs and the cover art. Still, nothing is overstated or made too obvious, except the fact that, through the course of the ninety-minutes plus contained herein, Seth Yacovone mixes heart, mind and soul in just the proper proportions.