Alain Caron is an impressive Canadian fretless bass virtuoso. A Berklee college alumnus and founder of the fusion super band UZEB, Caron has toured extensively throughout the years in the province of Quebec. He has been the bass player of choice for Mike and Leni Stern among other greats. Based in Montreal, his own band Le Band has released several albums. "The Jazz Rock Cuts" is a collection Alain Caron compositions, some of the highlights from Alain Caron’s solo career.
Things open up with the synthesizer heavy "Slam The Clown" from the debut CD Rhythm and Jazz. The piece "District 6" is a simple blues played at a medium to slow tempo, with the saxophone solo hitting the spot, right where it counts. On all selections, the sound of the bass is well out in the mix. UZEB fans will want to take this collection out for a spin. Bass players especially will love this collection. Caron is right at home with the screaming guitar lines, reminiscent of Michel Cuson, guitarist of UZEB. Funky horns from the aptly titled "The "F" File" are a bright portion of the collection. "Flight of the Bebop Bee" features MIDI bass playing, very unique. The band’s improvisational interplay on outro of "The Bump" is noteworthy.
This collection does not contain a ballad; none of the pieces come close. The bass solos have something to say and are much more than breaks or fillers, as most other bass solos are. They highlight Caron’s bouncy and buoyant bass sound, his distinctive and signature fretless sound. Caron is one of the masters of bass guitar, right up there with Jaco Pastorius, Will Lee, Darryl Jones and Victor Bailey. There are some good bass solos on this compilation, but it is not a compilation with more than average attention on the bass and their solos. It is a compilation that is very plugged in with the emphasis on the compositions. This is top shelf fusion from one of the genres pioneers.