In the wake of Hurricane Katrina, various groups offered their musical tributes to the city, but few if any captured the diverse snapshot that is New Orleans. Most tended to view the place as something of a musical museum, while ignoring the town's vibrant and innovative new music: the energetic, highly eroticized, and occasionally gender-bending style of hip hop called "bounce". Now Galactic have made what may be the definitive New Orleans tribute with YA-KA-MAY, by recognizing this fundamental truth; that all of the town's seemingly disparate styles - jazz, brass bands and funk as well as the newer bounce/hip hop - are intrinsically linked. There is a particular inclusiveness about the place which connects both its people and their music, linking seemingly discordant genres from bounce to jazz, brass bands to rock, gospel to funk. There is also, even in the face of diversity, a sense of infectious fun and joy in these grooves, just as there is on the streets of a city that always knows how to let its hair down.
The album features established legends such as the Rebirth Brass Band, Irma Thomas, Big Chief Bo Dollis, Allen Toussaint and Walter "Wolfman" Washington with younger artists like Trombone Shorty and Corey Henry, John Boutte, Josh Cohen and Scully, and Glen David Andrews, as well as groundbreaking new bounce artists like Cheeky Blakk, Big Freedia, Katey Red, and Sissy Nobby
The end result is New Orleans like it's truly meant to be heard, and Galactic's most hooky, catchy album to date.