234

Jeff Lorber Fusion: Now Is The Time

James Nadal By

Sign in to view read count
Jeff Lorber Fusion: Now Is The Time Only a handful of pioneering musicians can adapt the perception of fusion jazz into a contemporary mindset and make it palatable. With the release of Now Is The Time . Keyboardist Jeff Lorber demonstrates why he has maintained his stature and reputation, while producing music which is easy on the ears and accessible to a broad audience.

Now Is The Time represents a reinvention of Lorber's original musical trajectory, culled from his early catalog but given a fresh approach and identity. For his new version of the Jeff Lorber Fusion group, the keyboardist recruits bassist Jimmy Haslip and drummer Vinnie Colaiuta, joined by guitarists Paul Jackson Jr. and Michael Thompson on alternating tracks. Vocalist Irene B penned the lyrics to the four selections on which she is featured, and contributes a soulful element to the production, notably the opening "Rain Dance/Wanna Fly," (with Randy Brecker on flugelhorn) and the sultry "Sugar Free."

While acknowledged for his layered textural sound, Lorber also provides lucid piano accompaniment in just the right places. The band lays a supporting foundation for special guest Eric Marienthal—a saxophonist perfectly suited for interacting with Lorber's weaving keyboards—on Wayne Shorter's title track to the Weather Report classic, Mysterious Traveller (Columbia, 1974), revived here with a funky treatment that works well. Marienthal also teams up with the Blood Sweat and Tears horn section on full-bodied arrangements of "Pixel" and "Sumatra."

Now Is The Time offers a variation of tempos for nice conceptual listening, the songs flowing seamlessly from one to the next. This seems to be the intention of Lorber as producer, and stays true to the tradition he established early in his career. The recording could easily fall into the popular or smooth jazz category, and there is nothing wrong with that. Lorber states that he wants to "bring fusion back, with a twist," and with Now Is The Time, the keyboardist has clearly accomplished his objective.

Track Listing: Rain Dance/Wanna Fly; Dr. Moy; Pixel; Sugar Free; Mysterious Traveller; Curtains/Before We Go; Black Ice; Las Rosas; Chinese Medicinal Herbs; Sumatra.

Personnel: Jeff Lorber: keyboards; Irene B: vocals (1, 4, 6, 10); Paul Jackson Jr.: guitar (1, 3, 4, 7, 10); Randy Brecker: flugelhorn (1); Jimmy Haslip: bass (1, 3-11); Vinnie Colaiuta: drums (1, 3, 4, 5, 7, 8, 10); Jimmy Branly: percussion (1, 5, 7, 9) drums (6, 11); Eric Marienthal: saxophones (2, 3, 5-11); Michael Thompson: guitar (5, 6, 8, 11); Tony Maiden: guitar (2); Alex Al: bass (2); Li'l John Roberts: drums (2); Lenny Castro: percussion (2); Larry Koonse: guitar (9); Tom Timko: flute (1, 3, 9, 11); Steve Jankowski: flugelhorn (9), trumpet (1, 3, 11); Dave Weckl: drums (9); Jens Wendelboe: trombone (1, 3, 11); Teddy Mulet: lead trumpet ( 1, 3, 11).

Title: Now Is The Time | Year Released: 2010 | Record Label: Heads Up International


Tags

Related Video

comments powered by Disqus

More Articles

Read Crossing CD/LP/Track Review Crossing
by Geno Thackara
Published: June 25, 2017
Read Unit[e] CD/LP/Track Review Unit[e]
by Karl Ackermann
Published: June 25, 2017
Read Such A Sky CD/LP/Track Review Such A Sky
by Bruce Lindsay
Published: June 25, 2017
Read Buer: Book Of Angels Volume 31 CD/LP/Track Review Buer: Book Of Angels Volume 31
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: June 25, 2017
Read BACHanalia CD/LP/Track Review BACHanalia
by Jack Bowers
Published: June 24, 2017
Read Hallways CD/LP/Track Review Hallways
by Paul Rauch
Published: June 24, 2017
Read "Alameda Gardens" CD/LP/Track Review Alameda Gardens
by Glenn Astarita
Published: December 22, 2016
Read "Guess Who I Saw Today" CD/LP/Track Review Guess Who I Saw Today
by Edward Blanco
Published: July 14, 2016
Read "Hear & Now" CD/LP/Track Review Hear & Now
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: January 22, 2017
Read "Heaven" CD/LP/Track Review Heaven
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: June 19, 2017
Read "Light Shines In" CD/LP/Track Review Light Shines In
by Glenn Astarita
Published: December 2, 2016
Read "Arrhythmia" CD/LP/Track Review Arrhythmia
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: August 25, 2016

Join the staff. Writers Wanted!

Develop a column, write album reviews, cover live shows, or conduct interviews.