FourPLAY - X

November 2006

fourplayWith four of the most talented guys in the biz, the tradition continues!  The highly anticipated new Fourplay CD, X, has just been released and is the 10th in a series of fine contemporary jazz collectables.   Featuring the perennial hit makers, Bob James (keys), Nathan East (bass & vocals), Larry Carlton (guitar) and Harvey Mason (drums), this record confirms that thought-provoking music never goes out of style.  Masters at harmonizing the energy of individual performance with the synergy of ensemble play, the tracks are tight, transitions dramatic and the experience…a whole lot of fun! 

 Each member has a hand in composition and lets their creative side free.  James’ tune Turnabout jumpstarts the project and you’ll do a double take with his improvisational style on piano.  Turn up the subwoofer to fully appreciate East’s efforts on bass and let Mason wow you on drums.  The song boasts some unbelievable guitar work by Carlton, as well as electronic orchestrations, which add punch to a catchy hook!  Fourplay also scores big on the track Screenplay (another James composition) and with more of a traditional jazz feel their ensemble play is second to none!  Particularly impressive is Mason’s job on drums & cymbals, which sets the tone for each to dig their chops into.  Mason goes on to write and perform on the ultra-cool Kid Zero, a mid-tempo piece that pops with subtle syncopation, and his tune Twilight Touch slows the tempo, as well as the groove.  James’ gorgeous piano melody is weaved throughout and percussion elements impart a mysterious mood.  Listen up for the enticing subliminal vocals on this sexy little number!  My Love’s Leavin’ (written by Steve Winwood) is a clear crossover hit and if Fourplay is ever in need of a fifth, they’ve found him in special guest artist Michael McDonald, whose silken vocals blend beautifully.

Carlton dishes up a taste of, Cinnamon Sugar and this delicious morsel features a melody so sweet you’ll be craving seconds.  While, Be My Lover (music by Carlton & lyrics by East) playfully highlights the soothing vocals of Michele Pillar and East.  The enigmatic, new-aged Eastern Sky, composed by Marcel East/ Nathan East, keeps an impetuous pace and becomes a real testament of Fourplay’s incredible talent.  Then Nathan East’s song, Sunday Morning is just the way it was meant to be…relaxed in spirit, resolute in time and the perfect way to conclude a brilliant record. 

Fourplay is synonymous with exciting compositions, compelling performances and another extraordinary record!   Get X for your contemporary jazz collection ‘cause when you listen to Fourplay …you’re guaranteed great music!




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-D.J. Fazio