Multiple award-winning guitarist Brian Tarquin, whose previous CDs have garnered him the ASCAP Songwriter of the Year award for two consecutive years, offers 13 original compositions on his third recording for the Instinct Records label. Titled High Life, the smooth jazz, urban flair, and beautiful melodies float with a full-bodied resonance from his guitar, giving the listener several cool reasons to keep listening. The harmonic-driven ambience of his music fills such musical stories as "Celtic Tales," "Razor's Edge," and "Deep Blue Sea," while Jim Morrison's "Riders on the Storm" gets the benefit of an instrumental cover, complete with a buoyant smooth saxophone introduction by Cliff Lyons. In addition to the title track, "Spartacus" and " "Messiah" are among the top picks on the CD. They command your attention to Tarquin's rock guitar riffs, whammy bar expressions, and vocoder sections while adding a fresh contrast to the overall mood exuded on the CD. Tarquin's chord patterns and textures add color to his relaxed style throughout this set, and his ability to set a smooth mood at any tempo makes this selection of songs very interesting. Accompanied by Chris Ingram on keyboards and programming and Cliff Lyons on saxophone and flute, High Life sets Brian Tarquin apart from his contemporaries due to his solid songwriting skills on 13 compositions and his flawless delivery.
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AllMusic Review by Paula Edelstein