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CD REVIEW: Sandro Albert - The color of things
By Francesco Emmanuel - 10/16/2005 - 02:19 PM EDT

Artist: Sandro Albert
Album: The color of things
CD Review: Brazilian guitarist/composer virtuoso Sandro Albert displays his many talents here on his second release 'The color of things'. His smoothe contemporary jazz flavour eminates throughout the album.

His technique and tone hints of Pat Methany's style of playing, where the guitar carries the main melody line. However, unlike Methany, both male and female voices appear on certain tracks.

'Message across the sea' and 'The color of things' both have distinctive key changes from verse to chorus, taking listeners on a story-telling journey, back to Sandro's homeland, Brazil. The calibre of musicianship displayed on this record portrays a wealth of knowledge in the world of modern and standard jazz formats.

Albert has been fortunate to associate himself with such renowned names as Brazil's Milton Nascimento and Yellowjackets' Jimmy Haslip, a feat in itself. But it is no mystery here, Sandro not only plays the part of a techincally proficient jazz guitarist (and can he play!), he's also a master composer and arranger. The title track for instance starts off with an intricate run, executed with precise detail to every note and pause, from here it develops into an acoustic, folksy sort of number. The vocals and flute follow the guitar lines for a couple tracks. Every song is 'colored' at times with amazing pianowork by Edser Gomez and Tamir Hendelman; and throughout various songs, Katisse Buckingham plays a soft soprano sax and flute.

Perhaps the most catchy song is 'If we could dance now'. Sandro's guitar line plays a 'call and response' game with the soft and sexy female vocal of Jean Baylor (when she whispers over and over, 'Ye..aa..ah' it helps re-live an entire lifetime), the song has a lovely mambo, sultry latin feel to it. (Personally, it reminds me of a certain beautiful dancer who flies through the air and glides over surfaces, but anyway). Robben Ford delivers the second solo, it occurs at the perfect moment, right as the song sets to take off (the first note really gets you), and elevates the song to another plane of existence, by now, you can't help but dance with your feet and dig through your fondest romantic and childhood memories.

Songs vary in time signatures between and within each other, it's so subtley done that the listener is almost caught unaware that Sandro and company are off on some sonic tangent. There's the playful 'They walk among us', then there's the moody 'Minas to Rio' that picks up now and then into a mellow groove.

With such a vast collection of masterpieces, it's no wonder that Sandro has been getting rave reviews and constant airplay throughout the US on most major adult contemporary jazz stations. Whatever color Sandro's seeing, it encompasses all the music most jazz and latin connoisseurs have grown to love and respect.
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