David Benoit is like Dave Grusin one of the big names of contemporary jazz. Always looking after new sides of music, he creates with Earthglow (2010) anew gripping melodies with addictive potential. Inspired by the breathtaking NASA photo of our planet, which decorates the CD, the content keeps the promise of the impressing cover.

Guest musicians on this album are Rick Braun (trumpet, flugelhorn), Brad Dutz (percussion), Jeff Kashiwa (sax), Pat Kelly (guitars), and Tim Weisberg (flutes). These names indicate, in which direction the ship is sailing: To the endless sea of contemporary jazz.

Starter of the album is Botswana Bossa Nova. Benoit comments: ďI loved the world mix of exotic ethnic percussion, African voices along with Brazilian beats..." Connoisseurs of Benoit's music will certainly recognize the seamless continuation of the style of his earlier period. A great initiator for this impression is David's genius working on Quincy Jones' Soul Bossa Nova, a song of timeless attraction.

Will's Chill sets the counterpart to the previous tune. Modern, contemporary, chilly, the song experiments with the chill-out style of European musicians without neglecting the importance of classic instruments presented by Pat Kelly (acoustic guitar), Jeff Kashiwa (sax) and of course David Benoit on piano.

On Unbelievable David Benoit guides us into the land of dreams. A captivating melody featuring Indian Tablas, Rick Braun on muted trumpet and Benoit shining on Rhodes and piano. As illustrated with Easy Day Benoit has a fascinating talent for appealing melodies, which he performs with the admirable elegance of a grandmaster of piano.

The ambient Straightaway opens the door to Benoit's spacey landscape with splashes of Kashiwa's emotional sax. With furious piano runs on New Creation Benoit shows his high competence as virtuoso pianist. You should listen to Earthglow in an hour of leisure. Enjoy David's sublime piano performance.

Back to the 60's with Sneaky As A Cat featuring flute legend Tim Weisberg. The song reminds me of tunes like the Pink Panther theme song or the Peanuts. Typical Benoit. When did you listen to a Waltz last time? Downtime has that fascinating swing.

What do you do, when your beloved pet cat ran away? David wrote Brownie's Gone. A sentimental heartfelt ballade to play the sadness away. Freedom At Midnight is David's signature melody since his GRP debut album in 1987. The introduction and later the refrain are a magnificent take on Beethoven's Moonlight Sonata performed in the style he often did on many of his live shows since several years.

David Benoit's Earthglow is exquisite contemporary jazz interpreted in catchy melodies. The best of three decades, Benoit's typical signature sound and intelligent music creation in a resounding unison.


 

 



 

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Album Information

Title: Earthglow
Artist: David Benoit
Year: 2010
Length: 0:48:48
Genre: Smooth Jazz
Label: Heads Up International


Tracks:

01 Botswana Bossa Nova [3:57]
02 Willís Chill [4:36]
03 Unbelievable [4:10]
04 Easy Day [4:43]
05 Straightaway [4:16]
06 New Creation [3:28]
07 Earthglow [4:27]
08 Sneaky As A Cat [4:10]
09 Downtime [4:17]
10 Brownie's Gone [4:38]
11 Freedom At Midnight [6:06]

Further reviews

Heroes

Benoit/Freeman Project 2