Mike Phillips - You have reached Mike Phillips

Friends of saxophone have to celebrate a feast. Hidden Beach Records has discovered a great talent: Mike Phillips. His upcoming album will keep all promises. Mike began his musical odyssey at the age of five in his native Mt. Vernon, NY. 

So the album starts with Next Stop Mt. Vernon. Sounds of traffic and arrival.

Mike shows his sensibility in blowing the sax on You Have Reached Mike Phillips - prelude. Slow with accelerating runnings the intro soon ends. 

You Have Reached Mike Phillips - accapella. Is this Mike's daughter showing her skills?

Just One Take is Mike's jump into hip-hop generation. Hard drum-programmed rhythms are the starting point for his melodic excursion with some jazz improvisations. 

42nd St. Subway - reprise is the underground reprise of Just On Take. Imagine you are running in the tunnels to reach your tube passing the sax-blowing musician with his hat placed in front of him. Some passers-by stop walking and are clapping their hands.

Wind is rising up. Sounds are wobbling in the air. A mind-loosing female voice is reciting. In this unreal atmosphere Mike is jamming along: A True Story - the tabernacle/alt

Funky bass and hip-hop rhythm are the base on which Mike starts his first hit: Tonite. A hooking melody for headboppers and dancers.

Beatin' On It starts with a percussion thing of a beat-box. Rimshot and bassdrum are the frame, Mike's chorus and lead sax the content. Mike knows to arrange the brass section perfectly .

The slow grooving urban contemporary Stop What Ya Doin' combines scratching and drum-programming. Above all Mike 's intriguing sax.

Huron Ave. delivers some fine guitar and keyboards sounds, while the rhythm or better the drum-machine adds nothing new.

Will You Stick With Me is not a question but another fine smooth jazz track. Anew one can discover Mike's mastership in playing and arranging.

Bass and vibes are introducing into the nightview of the album. Did you ever heard the phone-tone as a rhythm? Nice the muted trumpet as the accompany to Mike's sensitive sax: Love Is A Drug

More bass and guitar strings are sounding on the slow Baby Calls. A male chorus is singing the refrain in a mellow way.

A heartfiller is the love song When It Comes To Loving Me. Although you might often heard this R&B style, it's still charming and convincing.

Something about Maria, a sweet precious love song keeps up the mood. 

And Mike is very generous: Wonder & Special a further vocal song has a high hooking potential. Without any doubt recommendable for radio stations and compilations.

Last tune is You Have Reached Mike Phillips. Mike plays on this track lead sax and a wonderful sax arrangement. Don't stop the album to soon, there are some surprising follow ups.

In the last three years I have listened to hundreds of albums with the saxophone as the leading instrument. After some time symptoms of fatigue occured depending of the monotony of some smooth jazz albums. Mike's album is something special. He is awakening my appetite for sax melodies again.

 

HBH