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Eric Marienthal: Sweet Talk

Eric Marienthal sought new inspiration and decided that the way to get it was to record in a different setting with new collaborators. So the California-based saxophonist headed east and recorded with some top New York musicians, including guitarist Chuck Loeb, Late Show With David Letterman bassist Will Lee and keyboardist Jason Miles, who produced the resulting album, Sweet Talk (Peak). Throughout the album, Marienthal sounds energetic and inspired; he turns in a muscular performance on the organ-shaded “Nickel Plated,” enjoys some give-and-take with guitarist Jeff Mironov on “All I Am” and waxes tenderly lyrical on the album’s standout number, the title track, which he cowrote with his 14-year-old son, Robert. Marienthal’s kid had come up with a compelling riff and some chords, and together father and son created the pretty, gently grooving composition. “Caprichosa,” a never-before-recorded tune by renowned Brazilian composer Ivan Lins, features Lins himself on vocals while Marienthal’s sweet soprano weaves around him. Marienthal and Lins are exquisitely matched; it would be nice to hear them collaborate again in the future.

Originally Published