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It’s been well over a decade now since a renaissance movement put the funky Hammond B-3 organ back on the scene with a vengeance. It’s been nearly that long since Larry Goldings decided to get together with guitarist Peter Bernstein and drummer Bill Stewart to form one of the preeminent organ combos of modern vintage. In addition to sides for Verve, Minor Music, BMG and his three acclaimed Warner Brothers releases, Goldings has hit his stride while contracting with the savvy independent Palmetto Records. 1999’s Moonbird was among the trio’s best efforts to date and then last year’s Voodoo Dogs found Goldings expanding his horizons further in a studio project with Bob Ward.
Now it’s back to the trio with Bernstein and Stewart for As One, the latest Goldings manifesto. Nine varied and divergent tunes make up this set, which has the comfortable feel of a classic from the git-go. The “trio-logue” that takes place at the conclusion of “Going to Meet the Man” hints at the kind of telepathic camaraderie that the threesome has developed. Bernstein displays his strong talent for singing a line with a strong depth of feeling as heard on “The Thrill Is Gone.” Stewart too is a key member of the ensemble, taking on the added role of writer with the inclusion of his own “Mynah.” Much in the same way that he gave a fresh face to Joni Mitchell's “Woodstock” on the Moonbird set, Goldings takes on the Zombie’s psychedelic hit “Time of the Season” and the resulting funky romp is predictably fine. Rounding out a solid package is a solo tour-de-force from Goldings entitled “Glass.”
Not much more really needs to be said. The union of Goldings, Bernstein, and Stewart is pure bliss and each one of the trio’s combined efforts is to be savored to the fullest.
Track Listing: Mixed Message, Going To Meet The Man, The Thrill Is Gone, Back In The Day, Calls, As One, Time Of The Season, Mynah, Glass
Personnel: Larry Goldings (organ), Peter Bernstein (guitar), Bill Stewart (drums)