Become a member and get exclusive access to articles, live sessions and more!
Start Your Free Trial

Metro: Metrocafe

JazzTimes may earn a small commission if you buy something using one of the retail links in our articles. JazzTimes does not accept money for any editorial recommendations. Read more about our policy here. Thanks for supporting JazzTimes.

Somewhere between smooth jazz and raw fusion sits Metro, who dish out wailing guitar and keyboard solos while keeping an eye on fun funk. Metrocafe, the third CD from guitarist Chuck Loeb, keyboardist Mitchel Forman, bassist Victor Bailey and drummer Wolfgang Haffner, has a softer edge than earlier works, yet it retains a sense of adventure.

Loeb, who recently picked up a best contemporary jazz award from the Association for Independent Music for Listen, shakes off his easygoing tendencies for some spirited solos, noticeably on cuts such as “Metrocafe” and “Field of Diamonds.” But the magical Loeb’s touch is happily present in such melodic tunes as “House and Home” and “Shadow Play.” Foreman, for his part, keeps his keys on the sidelines, laying down precise lines on the Metheny-like “It’s All Good” (which features the wordless vocals of Loeb’s wife, Carmen Cuesta) and “Month of Sundays.” Oddly, though, Forman’s memorable moments come less frequently on Metrocafe than on Metro’s earlier CDs.

Start Your Free Trial to Continue Reading

Become a JazzTimes member to explore our complete archive of interviews, profiles, columns, and reviews written by music's best journalists and critics.