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Paul Taylor: Hypnotic

Saxophonist Paul Taylor’s considerable talents fall into the hands of multiple producers and collaborators on Hypnotic (Peak Records PKD 8505-2; 50:26), keeping the sporadically exciting album from developing a truly distinctive identity. Highlights abound, particularly performance-wise, as Taylor cruises and wanders wistfully on soprano over the dark undertones of “Flight 808,” and pipes through lean, cornered alto lines on the funky “Summer Park.” However, side concerns like the heavy breathing R&B vocals on “Sunshine” and slapping, cold programming on “PT Cruiser” can distract from the mission at hand. In spite of the packaging, Taylor proves versatile as well as sensitive, favoring piping, straight-toned soprano over the sappy flutterings of his contemporaries, and executing tight harmonies on both alto and soprano horns.

Originally Published