Jazz guitarist Jeff Richman’s latest is full of great songs that leave ample room for chops, and he enlists A-list help (including drummer Vinnie Colaiuta and bassists Neil Stubenhaus and Dean Taba) to purvey the 10 excellent tunes.
The title cut is a laid-back funk with chord changes that call to mind Steely Dan at its jazziest; Richman effortlessly navigates the changes and gets a little nasty as the solo wraps. Colaiuta adds syncopated genius to “In Spirited” and “Awful Pretty,” the latter a ’70s-style fusion piece that sounds fresh, with Richman contributing a surprising solo. The former adds a bit of rock to the proceedings.
The sound of “In Flux” matches its title, starting as a swinger with Richman rippin’ before it morphs into a funky march, then back to swinging jazz dominated by a head-spinning solo. “Touch and Go” has a bluesy rock feel and a solo with pinched notes, soaring/gliding runs, and a middleeastern feel. And the ballad “The Endless In Between” lets him show off a soulful, melodic side while Deron Johnson serves up a lovely solo on the Fender Rhodes.
This article originally appeared in VG‘s Nov. ’10 issue. All copyrights are by the author and Vintage Guitar magazine. Unauthorized replication or use is strictly prohibited.