Kenwood Dennard

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    4
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This funky set has a "music minus one" quality to it, as if one is waiting for the main soloist to show up. Drummer Kenwood Dennard, guitarist Hiram Bullock, and electric bassist Marcus Miller are joined by two synthesizer players who sometimes seem to be filling in for other instruments but do not add much. Although the rock-ish Bullock has his moments and shows off his versatility, the unrelenting funk rhythms, lack of any strong melodies (only Prince's "Purple Rain" is mildly catchy), and sameness of mood and grooves lead to this being mildly diverting background music at best. All of the musicians are capable of more significant performances.

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