Thursday, February 23, 2017

Larry Coryell - 1979 - Return

Larry Coryell 
1979
Return




01. Cissco At The Disco
02. Rue Gregoire Du Tour
03. Five Mile Island
04. Return
05. Sweet Shuffle
06. Mediterranean Sundance / Entre Dos Aguas

Recorder June 4-6 at Vanguard Studios, NYC

- Larry Coryell / Guitar
- Darius Brubeck / Piano
- Chris Brubeck / Bass
- Dan Brubeck / Drums
- Ray Mantilla / Percussion



Larry Coryell made his earliest recordings as a leader for Vanguard and most of his sessions from 1968-75. After working for a variety of other labels, he came back for this lone effort in 1979. Coryell's basic sound was still the same as in his early fusion days, but the setting had changed. Joined by three of the Brubeck brothers (keyboardist Darius, electric bassist Chris and drummer Dan), along with percussionist Ray Mantilla, the guitarist performs three of his originals (including "Cisco at the Disco"), two Darius Brubeck numbers, and a selection co-written by Al DiMeola and Paco DeLucia. Although not one of his most significant dates, Larry Coryell sounds in fine form throughout this modern mainstream LP, stretching himself a bit.

This is one of my favourite Larry Coryell albums. Dangerously close to soft jazz this is an album with the Brubeck brothers that is irresistably energetic. There is so much passion and joy in this and Larry's trademark chunky sound together with technical playing which is clearly by a man back at the top of his form makes this a must buy. In my opinion Larry is always stronger when he avoids too much technical pyrotecnics and just burns from the heart. The melodious nature of the tunes means that Larry has a platform from which he effortlessly churns out singing, soulful and inspirational solos side after side. And the sidemen aren't half bad either. A shortish recording but each and every song is a gem...what more could you want?

I first met the Larry Coryell/Brubeck Brothers band on a rare, direct-to-disk recording ("Better than Live") that would become my all-time favourite musical moment. And it still is. So I spent a few years looking for another collaboration, even asked Larry himself(!) until I found this one. Although there's not as much magic in "Return" than in "Better than Live", the former still deserves the best appreciation. Larry has the Magic Touch. He is the Divine Guitar, and the he and the Brubeck Brothers are the best of the late-70s Jazz-Rock bands.

Larry Coryell came back for this lone effort with Vanguard Records in 1979. Joined by three of the Brubeck brothers (keyboardist Darius, electric bassist Chris and drummer Dan - yes, they are Dave Brubeck's sons!), along with percussionist Ray Mantilla, the guitarist performs three of his originals (including "Cisco at the Disco"), two Darius Brubeck numbers, and a selection co-written by Al DiMeola and Paco DeLucia.
Now many critics will state that this effort by Coryell was not one of his most significant projects, but I challenge the listener/buyer to check it out regardless of what a few critics may say.
Larry Coryell, always in fine form throughly kicks it up many notches on the CD title cut, 'Return', which, when I blast this song from my car while riding down the street, I'm always asked, "Who's that jammin' on the axe?!" Obviously, guitar aficionados recognize "GREATNESS" when they hear it!

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