A true stylist who has performed with a who's who of jazz, pop and jazz-fusion artists, trumpeter Randy Brecker's latest solo effort includes his equally renowned brother, saxophonist Michael Brecker and vibraphonist Joe Locke along with perennial studio musicians; guitarist Hiram Bullock, bassist Will Lee and others. Here, Brecker injects a bit of whimsy into a set consisting of funk-groove rhythms, hip-hop, tight horn charts, synths, drum programming and everything and anything producer George Whitty decided to utilize for this sadly over-produced outing. With "Overture," the band conveys a party atmosphere via nondescript themes and Brecker's moderately amusing yet altogether silly rap, while "Wayne Out" features more of the same, although guitarist Adams Rogers generates a bit of much needed interest, thanks to his heated soloing.
The rap-funk saga continues with the title track "Hangin In The City," whereas Brecker elevates the excitement level a notch or two with rapid fire sixteenth notes during the Brecker Brothers-like composition titled, "Down For The Count." However, the band executes a relatively soulless blues motif amid Brecker's verbose and at times, squirrelly vocals on "Then I Came 2 My Senses." Basically, the trumpeter's latest musical visions and aspirations surge forth as being unintentionally sterile, overtly hi-tech and are perhaps more conducive for sneaker ads. Thus, Hangin' In The City beckons this writer, to make a beeline for the country.
Track Listing: Overture; Wayne Out; Hangin' In The City; I Talk To The Trees; Down For The Count; Pastoral (to Jaco); Them I Came 2 My Senses; Seattle; Never Tell Her U Love Her; I Been Through This Before; One Thing Led To Another.
Personnel: Trumpet/Flugelhorn & Pre-Production Programming by Randy Becker; all lead vocals by Randroid. Randy Brecker: trumpet, flugelhorn; Michael Brecker: tenor saxophone; George Whitty: keyboards and programming; Hiram Bullock: guitar, background vocals; Adam Rogers: guitar; Dean Brown: guitar; Joe Caro: guitar; Chris Minh Doky: acoustic and electric bass; Will Lee: electric bass, background vocals; Richard Bona: electric bass; Joe Locke: vibraphone; Don Alias: percussion; Mike Harvey: background vocals; Katreese Barnes: background vocals; and Randroid!
Title: Hangin' In The City
| Year Released: 2001
| Record Label: ESC Records