George Colligan: Mad Science

Fresh fusion and surging swing from a scintillating power trio featuring George Colligan on keys, Tom Guarna on guitar and Kenny Grohowski on drums. The exhilarating title track sounds like an outtake from Return to Forever’s groundbreaking Hymn of the Seventh Galaxy, with Guarna wailing with warm-toned, distortion-laced abandon à la Bill Connors. Colligan, a gifted, swinging pianist, demonstrates his adeptness on the Minimoog during his extended solo here. “Anthem” (which also appeared on Lenny White’s Anomaly last year) is a grandiose, Romantic Warrior-sized number that unleashes the underrated Guarna. The band also turns in some inventive organ-trio fare on “Keeping Pace,” the 12/8 “Song for Obama,” the ominous “The Shadow Knows” and the Larry Young-ish swinger “Tightrope.” For something completely different, Colligan and Guarna delve into an ambient exploration on “Birth.”