310

Larry Carlton: Larry Carlton Collection Volume 2

Robert Spencer By

Sign in to view read count
It's cool. It's upbeat. It's danceable. It's the much accomplished Larry Carlton's Collection Volume 2, gathering the cream from his releases The Gift, Kid Gloves, Discovery, On Solid Ground, Alone / But Never Alone, and Larry & Lee (that would be Ritenour).

Carlton is a superb guitarist. His phrasing is impeccable, his ear for melody sound. His competent brand of cool collected-ness is no doubt what attracted the ear of Steely Dan, who had Carlton in now and again to take care of the fretwork. One chief difference is that Steely Dan had a sound, a readily identifiable style. Carlton's playing is faultless, but these tracks seem to melt into one another without much to distinguish them.

Moreover, after listening to this disc I'm still not entirely sure what Larry Carlton has to say. I'm not sure who he is — despite his virtuoso chops, much of this music could have been made by any number of smooth jazzmen. Of course, that may be all Mr. Carlton is after. He is notably effective on "Honey Samba," touching on "The Gift," delicately precise on "Pure Delight," and charming on "Farm Jazz," which does sound a little different (in a chugging faux -hillbilly direction) from the rest of the fare.

Guest stars on this compilation include Kirk Whalum, who contributes some standard smooth-fusionary licks and a few memorable phrases, especially on "March of the Jazz Angels," which began by reminding me of the Seventies pop hit "How Long Has This Been Going On?"

Larry Carlton is a virtuoso, but is never flashy for its own sake. Amid the synthesizer gauze of these tracks he himself plays brilliantly, and is, of course, the major attraction.

| Record Label: GRP Records | Style: Contemporary/Smooth


Shop

More Articles

Read Transparent Water CD/LP/Track Review Transparent Water
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: February 20, 2017
Read Billows Of Blue CD/LP/Track Review Billows Of Blue
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: February 20, 2017
Read Love Dance CD/LP/Track Review Love Dance
by Karl Ackermann
Published: February 20, 2017
Read Honest Woman CD/LP/Track Review Honest Woman
by James Nadal
Published: February 20, 2017
Read June CD/LP/Track Review June
by Karl Ackermann
Published: February 19, 2017
Read The Final Concert CD/LP/Track Review The Final Concert
by John Sharpe
Published: February 19, 2017
Read "Out Of The Blue" CD/LP/Track Review Out Of The Blue
by Tyran Grillo
Published: November 4, 2016
Read "Stick Men + David Cross: Midori" CD/LP/Track Review Stick Men + David Cross: Midori
by Geno Thackara
Published: March 28, 2016
Read "This Is Where I Live" CD/LP/Track Review This Is Where I Live
by James Nadal
Published: June 20, 2016
Read "The River" CD/LP/Track Review The River
by Karl Ackermann
Published: June 16, 2016
Read "Goran Ivanovic Trio" CD/LP/Track Review Goran Ivanovic Trio
by Budd Kopman
Published: May 1, 2016
Read "Hatch and Host" CD/LP/Track Review Hatch and Host
by Ian Patterson
Published: February 25, 2016

Post a comment

comments powered by Disqus

Sponsor: ECM Records | BUY NOW  

Support our sponsor

Support All About Jazz's Future

We need your help and we have a deal. Contribute $20 and we'll hide the six Google ads that appear on every page for a full year!

Buy it!