May 1999

Flip DeBlasio
Flip Side
Jazzheads Records

With Flip Side, keyboardist Flip DeBlasio attempts to elevate lite-jazz with a heightened sense of group empathy and knotty rhythmic figures. He succeeds on "What We Had for Breakfast," in which he lays some tricky figure work that recalls Chick Corea and on the gospel-infused ballad, "Gladly, I'd Give My Heart." Unfortunately the rest, for all its brainy rhythmic outburst, sounds like rehashed Bob James. Depending on the situation, tenor saxophonist Bob Mintzer alternates between scintillating and shmaltzy, while drummer Zach Danizigger propels the ensemble with tasteful, yet generic swing. DeBlasio is a keyboardist of considerable talent, too bad he's decided to focus his energy on such flaccid drivel.

Originally published in May 1999
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