David Liebman

Back on the Corner

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While listening to saxophonist Dave Liebman's 2006 release, Back on the Corner, it's pretty darn hard not to think of Miles Davis' groundbreaking early-'70s fusion period. And there are obvious reasons for this: firstly, Liebman actually played with Davis at one point (appearing on Davis' 1973 release, On the Corner), another Davis sideman plays throughout the album (guitarist Mike Stern), and lastly, two of the compositions were penned by Davis himself. Joining Liebman and Stern is renowned sessionman Anthony Jackson on contrabass, plus Liebman's own band of the last 15 years (bassist Tony Marino, guitarist Vic Juris, and drummer Marko Marcinko). And the group admirably replicates the sound and feel of all those classic fusion releases of the early '70s (no Spyro Gyra-esque blahness here), especially on the aforementioned Davis-penned tracks, "Ife" and the downright funky "Black Satin," as well as the laid-back album opener, "5th Street," and another funk workout, the properly titled "J.B. Meets Sly." If you think that vintage-sounding fusion is dead and gone circa the early 21st century, Dave Liebman's Back on the Corner should change your mind.

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