VW Brothers

Muziek

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AllMusic Review by

Veterans as sidemen in the contemporary jazz scene, brothers Paul van Wageningen and Marc van Wageningen have become an in-demand rhythm team, and finally get a chance to strut with their own band. Crossover appeal in Latin jazz and funk à la mid-period Weather Report identifies the music heard, and it's a delightful mix -- exciting, pulsating, literate, and most importantly not dated. With help from many San Francisco, CA-based friends, Paul (drums) and Marc (electric bass guitar) make solid contemporary jazz that has a universal appeal that most mainstream or improvising ensembles lack. Marc has a particular fondness for Jaco Pastorius, as his sound is parallel, very recognizable on an outstanding hopped-up version of the standard "Milestones." On the Latin side, the heated-up "Zapatos de Madera" and Santeria-influenced "El Abogado" are prime examples of the VW Brothers' past and vast experience in this arena. Their original "Moon Over Gate 24" displays a stealth underground late-night visage of shadows, and barely enough light. There are also separate orchestral, commercial pop, and ballad elements to their music. While some might find all of it to be somewhat derivative, it's not to the point where you can't -- in the main -- feel the fire and taste the spice. Because VW is much easier to pronounce than van Wageningen, the brothers have edited their name and music to a finely sharpened edge. Muziek is excellently conceived and executed from start to finish; it is a highly recommended and keenly diverse effort.

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