Stan Getz

Apasionado

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AllMusic Review by

In the liner notes to this album, Stan Getz comments about how producer Herb Alpert showed him aspects of recording he had never experienced before. In this case, it's how to over-produce without overwhelming a lead soloist, as Alpert loads up this date with synthesizer players, electric instruments, and effects as a backdrop for the ultra-cool tenor of Getz. While not going overboard, it would have been nice to hear this music without the caramel-thick arrangements, leaving just Getz and a rhythm section to play sans the unnecessary sugarcoating. Initially released about a year before Getz passed away, the end result is a lazy and far too sweet group of pieces that muck up romance in a smothering fashion. Where string arrangements can sound beautiful, the sleepy synths on "Waltz for Stan" and echoplexed sax during "Madrugada" and especially the nine-minute ambling "Midnight Ride" are not just a trifle overbearing. Eddie del Barrio's "Coba" fares better in a fusion-on-the-rock-side mode mixed with Brazilian tropicalia, while the title track utilizes an acoustic big band mixed with synths and electric piano in a ballad-to-light-samba-to-heavy-beats sauce. "Española" starts with an out of tune electric bass guitar followed by some clichéd electric guitar from Michael Landau, while "Amorous Cat" reflects its title in a light funk rhythm. Some very good players are included, like drummer Jeff Porcaro (Toto), percussionist Paulinho Da Costa, acoustic guitarist Oscar Castro-Neves, and keyboardist Kenny Barron, with George Bohanon and Oscar Brashear in the big-band horn section. Otherwise, this recording is far from essential music made by Stan Getz, more suitable for mood music elevator wallpaper than a substantive listening experience.

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