Sam Cardon

Serious Leisure

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In the prime of synthesizer-led jazz, this album is a strong contender. The title is taken from a band Cardon did some work for a number of years ago. The rhythm is the serious part; Cardon must have been born with a groove in his fingers. The leisurely part is how the moderate jazz gets you eager for a weekend getaway. Pictures of snow skiing, gliding across the lake, and firing up the four-wheelers come to mind. Superb keyboard work highlights a tight ensemble that includes guitar guru Michael Dowdle. The first listen garners favorites in the middle of the lineup. "Wishing Well" and "Solitude" are the biggest winners, using fresh piano riffs to hook listeners. "Infrared Eyes" has an instant adhesiveness that gets it stuck in your head. Most of these tunes would fit best in outdoor adventure movies. Or, of course, if you feel like an adventure of your own, this will give you a serious head start.

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