V-Loop Trio

Kindred Souls

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    6
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AllMusic Review by

In a nutshell, this is a fine first offering for this relatively young and energetic jazz trio. The band's founder and leader, Val Lupescu (born in Romania) plays solidly pleasing and at times exciting jazz guitar. His styles range from such greats as Wayne Johnson, Pat Metheny, Steve Khan, and Andy Summers, with brief flashes of Carlos Santana and even Mike Stern. Jorge Albuquerque (of Rio de Janeiro) is the intricately tight and melodic bassist. Glenn Williams (from south Florida) gives a wonderfully expressive and professional performance on drums. Duane Allen guests on solo guitars on two tracks. Eight songs are offered, ranging across the jazz menu from upbeat, crunchy fusion to "your table is ready" mellow lounge jazz. The musicianship is flawless throughout. All the compositions are by Lupescu except for the notably outstanding track "Green," by Albuquerque. He offers a wonderful bass solo on this cut that is deftly overlayed with that Badrena/Benson-esque scat-along vocalization. "Pictures of You" and "What If" open things up with excellent fusion punch and grit, as well as great unison lines. And after some mellowing out, "Delusion" offers a phat bass groove with a Stern-ish overdriven guitar tone. Duane Allen is heard soloing in a meaner, fusion-fired, reverbed growl. A future release of nothing but songs like these latter three would be a real winner. There is even a whiff of blues-rock Scott Henderson here. The album's outro consists of two laid-back cuts of tastefully blue and lazy-day, dreamy jazz.

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