Jean-Luc Ponty

No Absolute Time

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A switch back to Atlantic finds Jean-Luc Ponty continuing to dabble in West African waters while re-establishing his earlier solid base in repeating sequenced patterns. The electronics are back, for Ponty splits his time between the electric violin and various synthesizers and sequencers while Abdou M'Boup and Sydney Thiam add African percussion, which often takes a back seat to the electronics as the rhythmic basis for the music. This time, though, the material Ponty has composed isn't as compelling as it had been in the past; at times, Ponty sounds like he is very competently treading water (though "Blue Mambo" has a compelling groove). Yet despite all of the changes Ponty has put himself through, his music still has a Continental elegance that cannot be mistaken for that of anyone else.

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