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Lunar Orbit by Karl Denson Trio

Saxophonist Karl Denson provides more with a little less on this tight-knit trio date featuring guest artists chipping on various tracks. Known as a jazz-based groove merchant, the artist continues in that mode, but has his sights set relatively high via these strong and memorably melodic compositions. With a catchy and programmatic bass, organ and flute motif on the opener and title track, the band provides a harbinger of good things to come.

Denson’s funk-groove methodology moves forward, abetted by trickling synth overlays, peppy horn parts and beats designed with gobs of pop, shuffle and snap On "Won’t Somebody," the band executes a hip, up-tempo ballad, enamored with a Motown edge and driven-home by the leader’s soul-stirring lines atop a straight-forward backbeat. Sure enough, a good portion of these pieces are simple, yet wholeheartedly accessible and effective.

In various areas, Denson ventures into jazz-fusion terrain, where he engages his keyboardists in thrusting unison choruses sometimes dappled with EFX treatments. But the success of this project is steeped within his ability to get his point across sans any glitzy arrangements, while conveying rock solid chops along the way. No doubt about it, Denson is on the money here and it could very well signify his finest outing to date.

Additional Info

  • Artist / Group Name: Karl Denson Trio
  • CD Title: Lunar Orbit
  • Genre: Acid Jazz
  • Year Released: 2007
  • Record Label: Bobby Ace Records
  • Rating: Four Stars
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