Bryan Savage

Soul Temptation

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Fellow multi-reedsman Nelson Rangell could learn a valuable lesson from Bryan Savage, who takes the risk of switching off between flute and saxes on his Higher Octave debut Soul Temptation. Equally adept at being a classically influenced postmodern Tim Weisberg and edging robustly on alto and tenor towards the steamy Gato Barbieri sound, Savage offers a little spunky something for everyone: a rich, improvisational fireball of "Georgia on My Mind"; a disco-minded slappiness on "Party Line"; and a flashy Tower of Power-type vibe on the catchy "Kaleidoscope." Written by Rick Braun (who also adds Savage to his production resume here), that tune finds Savage like a kid in the proverbial music store carrying the slamming melody by tripling flute, alto, and tenor and wrapping that brew around Braun's punchy fl├╝gelhorn. Everyone wants the Braun horn sound on their recordings, and it's to Savage's credit that the trumpet only shows up on two cuts as harmony; Braun, however, does lay some slick grooves via his underappreciated skills as a keyboardist/programmer.

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