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Inner Vision: Tropico

Using big-horn muscle to its greatest advantage, the eleven-member band Inner Vision provides a retro treat with Tropico (Cats Paw CPD-6301; 43:20). Trombonist Warren Moore’s horn arrangements provide an unexpected spark on lighter tunes-like the lithe, Jobim-like “In the Clouds” and a piping, sun and surf read of Dionne Warwick’s pop chestnut “Deja Vu” (featuring a cool fluegelhorn solo by Ronnie Buttacavali)-but the power side rules the house. The funky “C&N” demonstrates a wall of big brass power and execution and Moore’s original “rBST” runs with jangling guitars, and horn sounds hitting staccato and jumping off. Another Moore-penned gem, “Point 9,” has a laid-back, yet tough strut and swagger recalling the famed L.A. Jazz Ensemble. In the age of programmed-and-synthesized arrangements, Inner Vision’s real, in-your-face approach is a change of pace that classic jazz fans will love.

Originally Published