In a nutshell this is a fine first offering for this relatively young and energetic jazz trio. Val Lupescu, born in Romania, Europe the founder and leader plays solidly pleasing and at times exciting jazz guitar. His styles range through such greats as Wayne Johnson, Pat Metheny, Steve Khan, Andy Summers, with brief flashes of Carlos Santana and even Mike Stern. Jorge Albuquerque of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, is the intricately tight and melodic bassist. Glenn Williams of South Florida, USA, gives a wonderfully expressive and professional performance on drums. Duane Allen guests on solo guitars on two tracks.
Eight songs are offered, ranging the jazz menu from upbeat, crunchy fusion to “your-table-is-ready” mellow lounge jazz. Musicianship is flawless throughout. All compositions are by Lupescu except for the notably outstanding track, “Green” by Albuquerque. He offers a wonderful bass solo on this cut that is deftly overlayed with that Badrena/Bensonesque scat-along vocalization.
“Pictures of You” and “What If” opened up things with excellent fusion punch and grit, as well as great unison lines. And after some mellowing out, “Delusion” offers a phat bass groove with Sternish overdriven guitar tone. Hear Duane Allen solo in a meaner, fusion-fired, reverbed growl. I could go for a future release of nothing but songs like these three. I even caught a whiff of bluesy-rock Scott Henderson here.
We outro with two laidback cuts of tastefully blue and lazy-day, dreamy jazz. If you like Wayne Johnson, Andy Summers’ later solo releases, Steve Khan, and quality guitar-driven jazz then I recommend The V-loop Trio. Who knows what other fine releases you may hear from this group if this release does well? Support your local jazz musician for happy ears.
Track listing:1. Pictures of You; 2. What If; 3. Flowers for Jenny; 4. Summerland; 5. Green; 6. Delusion; 7. V-loop Blues; 8. Dark City;
I was first exposed to jazz while working overseas in Africa as a Peace Corps Volunteer. I would listen to the Voice of America on the radio and they had a nightly jazz program on at 10:00pm. I learned a lot about jazz listening to this program. I also had a friend who listened to real jazz by artists like Charles Mingus, Eric Dolphy and Archie Shepp. On my way home from Africa I landed in New York and had the opportunity to see the George Adams/Don Pullen quartet at the Village Vanguard as well as Kenny Barron and Ron Carter at another club, and was in heaven.