Vincent Wolfe

Trust the Vibe

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Trust the Vibe is a prime example of understated, but not passionless, vocalizing. Vincent Wolfe interprets the lyrics to the songs on this, his initial album, with a softly modulated voice, and the result is 55 minutes of very pleasant singing. The only time he moves away from his laid-back stance is on the tracks where Pat LaBarbera plays a lively tenor on "Mais Que Nada." A major reason for the success of this outing are the contributions of Sean Bray on guitar and George Koller on bass. Bray's guitar is acoustic on most cuts, getting some very unique sounds out of his stringed box. First, he emulates a harpsichord on "People Get Ready" and "A Song for You," and then turns on the electricity for a bluesy "You Just Don't Know." Often, Koller uses his bass as a percussive instrument by striking the frame to make the bass sound like a bongo. It is not at all gimmickry, but fits in nicely with Bray's guitar and Wolfe's singing. Wolfe, Bray, and Koller have worked together in Canada and their previous and frequent musical collaboration is another reason this album is successful. On "Everything Happens to Me," LaBarbera takes a chorus or two on the soprano for his second and last appearance on the album. On his own ballad, "Almost You," Wolfe shows a little more passion than on the other tunes. The album's coda tune, Billie Holiday's "God Bless the Child," is the highlight, as Wolfe and Bray add the right touch of soul to avoid making this just another mawkish rendition of this classic. There is some effective (and different) bass bowing by Koller here. Trust the Vibe is a very listenable maiden album by a vocalist with more than credible chops.

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