• Host Echo, “Be Water”

When asked, many younger music listeners will say that they don’t have a favorite music genre, that they will listen to everything.

“Be Water,” the first full-length album from Niagara Falls-based Host Echo, offers just that.

A classic guitar sound in the mold of Carlos Santana? Check. A singer straight off a 1940s jazz quartet? Check. A DJ behind the turntable? Check.

They combine to offer a sound somewhere in between Radiohead and the less-amped offerings from the Red Hot Chili Peppers, with a hint of Canada’s The Tea Party thrown in.

The melodies of guitarist Andy Bieniek are by far the best part of this album. Right from the opening track, “Hypnogogic,” it’s his six-string that carries the album. You can tell that he truly enjoys what he is doing.

Not that the rest of the group is bad. Singer Nick Spacone offers a gentle voice that perfectly complements mellow tracks such as “While Rising” and “Mind is a Forest,” which almost sounds like an interpretation of Pink Floyd’s “Dark Side of the Moon.” Joe Stocker on the turntables and Sam Peller on percussion provide the right backing without taking over the songs.

Host Echo is in the midst of a transition, as the group recently replaced departed bassist Mike Johnston with Karin Kaszuta. The group also plans to perform several shows out of state in the coming months. Visit hostechomusic.com or the band’s Myspace page to stay updated.

As the name of the album suggests, “Be Water” won’t blow anyone away, but it will quench the thirst of many music fans. ** 1/2

— Paul Lane

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