Michael Levanios

Another View

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With so many new names cropping up every month on indie labels, it takes a special perspective to achieve the notice their talent no doubt warrants. Keyboardist Michael Levanios purports to have Another View simply by his second release's title, and, lo and behold, his spinning melodies and edgy brass flourishes may just be enough to put him on the map with the big boys. Like all great pop instrumental composers, Levanios knows instinctively that while he should feature himself as often as possible, often other instruments prove an effective counterpoint. So, as elegant and frolicsome as his keys and Midi grand piano are, equal amounts of the credit go to Ron Kerber's sax ignition, Jef Lee Johnson's basses and electric string expressions, and Stan Slotter's flute on the exotic standout track "Samba Espresso." While the rest of the disc is not quite as cosmopolitan as that title would indicate, there are enough rock-blues-soul pleasures and breezy tenderness to give yet another unique twist to what are fast becoming the same old lines.

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