‘Cruisin’ is the fifth CD by acoustic guitarist Marc Antoine on the Verve label where he offers a very mellow and melodic performance. Using the acoustic nylon string guitar throughout ‘Cruisin’, Antoine performs some great melodies with a very soft delivery. The title of the CD is appropriate, given the feel throughout the collection of smooth jazz tunes. ‘Cruisin’ eases from one piece to the other with no great contrast of tempo velocity and certainly, spontaneous jamming.... .Yes, improvisation is woefully non-existent. While incorporating great production by Tommy LiPuma (of George Benson and Diana Krall fame) and guest appearances Patti Austin, Jerry Hey, Phillippe Saisse and Peter Erskine one might expect stellar music performances but everyone seems to be.... you guessed it-cruisin’.
Smooth Jazz listener’s of the late night café crowd might be just the audience for this calming collection of tunes. While Marc Antoine is certainly a competent, melodic performer he seems to have just one mood on his latest disk where he chooses to "cruise", so don’t expect to run, skip, hop or fly with this CD since it seems to be stuck in a one tempo ALA mode. I’m surprised there was no velocity or tension release in the rhythms or melodies. Be prepared to have a safe cruise with no surprises, interaction or even romance.
‘Cruisin’ does offer some great melodies and mellow tones so if you want a great background disk for conversation after a date movie, Marc Antoine will certainly deliver the goods and get you home safe before late night jazz curfew.