David Sanborn

Another Hand

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When David Sanborn debuted on Elektra with Another Hand after a 13-year stay at Warner Bros., the altoist swore off formulaic, radio-oriented muzak and vowed to make artistic considerations his main priority. There's nothing shallow or contrived about the album, an exploratory, heartfelt effort generally defined by his introspective, soulsearching improvisations. Sanborn tends to be reflective rather than extroverted -- an exception being the soul-jazz gem "Hobbies." Instead of avoiding complexity as some of his more commercial recordings did, Another Hand often thrives on it. The album's main flaw lies in the fact that too often, the sidemen tend to serve as a backdrop for Sanborn instead of being active soloists. But given the depth and overall excellence of Sanborn's playing, one tends to overlook that shortcoming.

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