Thursday, 4 June 2009

U-Nam - Unanimity - 2009 - Trippin' N Rhythm Records

Oh yes! France's wonderful jazz guitarist U-Nam unleashes his third album and ensures that you will want to own this album within moments of hearing it. Not one to mess about, U-Nam has always been one to employ the very cream of US talent, and now there is no excuse with him being based in Los Angeles! This CD is vastly instrumental - something that usually leaves me somewhat cold - but such is this man's vibrancy and talent that each and every song has a nuance and life of it's own. This is no dreary Smooth Jazz set, this is funk-heavy with more than a drizzle of soul and plenty of JAZZ! On this CD we are treated to the superb musical addition of Najee with flute and Sax, Franck Sitson on Fender Rhodes, Clavinet, Acoustic piano ands Organ, Michael White on drums, Dennis Bennarosh on percussions, the Paris Horns as well as the M.A. string section! Add to this mix U-Nam's more than Benson-esque guitar licks and Marva King's vocals the package is more than complete. It's a done deal.

I am seriously struck by "This Is Just 4 U". Had MoJazz kept going with Motown, and Norman Brown taken a more urban, bass-heavy approach then I am sure one possibility would have been this style of SUPERB Jazz. U-Nam lays down a platter of relaxed, George Benson / Wes Montgomery founded licks perfect for a Summer's day and ensconced them in a summery vibe and meaty, reverberating and bouncing heavy rhythm. This track satisfies on many, many levels as does the following song "The Next Day I Met You" which is a real KILLER. The opening melody is very much out of the 70s and the heavier bass edge soon whisks us further away to somewhere hot, sunny and relaxing. These are spellbinding instrumentals. You won't see me write that comment often! LOL. Najee's brilliant contributions create extra pleasure on the gorgeous "Soul Boy Reincarnation" and U-Nam's expert musicianship is totally in control. I am also struck with the warm, all-encompassing "My Heart And Soul", complete with string section, which showcases the real talent this gentleman has and also allows us into his more sensitive side. The strings are really sweet and the atmosphere truly chilled. Brilliant. Along with U-Nam's other essential sets, "Unanimity" provides yet another side of this man to savour. Well worth a purchase.

Barry Towler
The Vibe Scribe

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