Mr. Gone

Fresh Out the Box

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A studio-driven jazz project for Simon T. Bramley, the second album from Mr. Gone sets the bar a bit higher for dance producers but, unlike a few other jazz fusionaries of note (Jazzanova, 4hero, Carl Craig), the rhythmic attack doesn't stray far from his influences: an up-tempo jazz dancer or the clatter of the Brazilian samba. Bramley barely even touches the beats, instead playing some nimble electric bass and adding keyboards to contributions from horn player Jamie M. Harris, guitarist Ian Crabtree, and synths/keyboard player Neil Hunter. "Mosquito Coast 2000," a remake of an old production, blends piano comping with a tough Brazilian groove that would do Azymuth proud, while "Just Listen to the Record" and the title track update acid jazz for the new millennium with pleasant solos making up for the lack of a fresh sound. Though it's definitely not a revolution in the making, Fresh Out the Box finds Bramley and co. making a good record that forswears most of the programmed aspects of jazz-meets-dance projects (especially on the keyboards).

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