Eric Gale's 1973 Forecast album on the Kudu label is one of his most varied texturally. Produced by Kudu label boss Creed Taylor, the rhythm tracks were arranged by Gale, and the horns and strings by Bob James. Taylor surrounded Gale with the cream-of-the-crop of the current session players: jazz's most soulful drummer, Idris Muhammad, was in the house for most of the album, and Rick Marotta filled out the rest. Saxophonists included Joe Farrell, Pepper Adams, and Jerry Dodgion (an underrated ace who made his name with Curtis Amy on his Pacific jazz sides in the early '60s), and trumpeters included Randy Brecker and Jon Faddis. Hubert Laws and George Marge sat in the flute chairs, and James played piano and synths. Gale, for his part, was blended into a meticulously arranged and gorgeously orchestrated set of mixed tempo originals, and a pair of carefully chosen covers: "Killing Me Softly," by Charles Fox and Norman Gimbel, and Antonio Carlos Jobim's and Aloysio de Oliviera's deeply moving "Dindi." Gale's single string lines bite harder than some of the Brazilian counterparts, but because his blues inflection is so pronounced against the lush strings, keyboards, and horns, it works wonderfully. Gale's own grooved out "Cleopatra," and the otherworldly funk and blues feel of "White Moth," are just off-kilter enough to add a labyrinthine dimension to the album. Gale was a tear when he was on Kudu, and this album is the first example of his particular brand of street tough yet bedroom romantic soul-jazz for the label.
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AllMusic Review by Thom Jurek