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Progressive Rock CD Reviews

Larry Coryell

Barefoot Man: Sanpaku

Review by Gary Hill

The fusion is strong with this release. It's a powerhouse jazz styled disc with some exceptional instrumental work. "Wait," you say, "this isn't prog rock." No, it's not, but we put fusion under prog because really the difference between jazz and prog and fusion is a matter of degrees. Whatever you call this, though, it's a killer new disc with a lot of flavors and sounds.
This review is available in book format (hardcover and paperback) in Music Street Journal: 2017  Volume 1 at
Track by Track Review

As this starts it almost feels like the blues. The groove that drives it is funky and very cool. The cut works out to more pure fusion and has some exceptional instrumental work. It's just plain awesome stuff. There is some seriously screaming hot jamming on this thing. It's a real powerhouse.

Back to Russia

There are definitely things here that make me think of Al Di Meola. This is one of that lands closer to the shared territory between fusion and rock. It's a powerhouse cut with some unexpected and very potent jamming.

If Miles Were Here
Wow, what a cool journey this is really. It's a bit on the "left of center" side of things. Yet, it has a driving groove that's almost catchy. While this is suitably strange, it's also very effective fusion. The bass driving this is ever-present. It's also great.
Improv on 97
Fast paced and powerful, this is a killer jazz excursion. It really rocks like crazy.
Coming in with piano as the main force, this is a mellower balladic cut. It's quite slow and pretty. While this gets more involved and energized, it still remains mellower than the previous tunes. It has some powerhouse bass work at times. There is some exceptional guitar soloing, too. This is a great cut, and a nice bit of variety.
Some serious funk brings this into being. "Manteca" is Spanish for "butter," and I can't imagine a better title for this song. It's buttery smooth. It's creamy and slippery and so tasty. It's a killer jam.
Blue Your Mind
I love this fun jazz groove, too. The guitar soloing really steals the show on a lot of this cut. Although this is a more or less straight-line number, the ending segment takes us on a cool side-journey.
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