Cool Breeze


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Cool Breeze Review

by Adam Greenberg

Cool Breeze is the sixth album from Hawaiian acoustic guitar trio Kohala. The basic structure of the songs here is to allow Charles Michael Brotman room to stretch out on his nylon-stringed guitar while the other two members lay in a soft background on steel strings, though there are certainly exceptions to the rule as the album progresses. While only one of their previous albums involved originals, this one is almost entirely made of original compositions by the members of the band, the exceptions being the Beatles' "I Will," a Tokyo radio spot, and a piece from the old Country Comfort band. On the originals, there's a notably higher influence of jazz motifs, and occasionally a bit of Spanish flavor, though less so. The album is more smooth jazz than Hawaiian acoustic, but there are elements of both present. With the level of similarity between performances, it becomes difficult to single out a track as a highlight. All tracks show a decent level of ability on the part of the performers, but none stand out as exceptional. It's a relaxed stroll through a lot of smooth jazz territory, with influences from Hawaiian guitar present, but not overly noticeable. Give it a listen as background music for a quiet weekend, but don't pick it up expecting the flavors of Hawaiian guitar work that have become popular.

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