Jimi Tunnell | Trilateral Commission – [ Art of Life Records, 2005]Jimi Tunnell, Bendik Hofseth and Rachel Z were all members of Mike Mainieri’s Steps in the 90’s and shared stage together while Jeff Andrews was playing bass on the Yin-Yang album from 1992. So this is not surprising that the guitarist hired those musicians for his own projects and no less surprising that the music shares common aspects with Steps; Trilateral Commission is melodic fusion in the best context of the word; it is very close at times to the Joe Zawinul’s Syndicate (Zalimo in its title alone could be a link but no doubt’s left when you hear the rhythm section flowing away!), it has the obligatory ballads (where Bendik Hofseth especially shines), the classic throat yodling of Turkish percussionist Arto Tuncboyaciyan, Rachel’s always impressive keyboard flights, tight and cooking drumming by Omar Hakim and more yet.
Last and not least, it reveals the guitar playing of the leader, unfortunately too unknown, somewhere between Mike Stern and Wayne Krantz and deserving to be more known and heard; all in all a very inspiring album that should get more than one spin on your CD player! —Pierre Tassone (Denmark)
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