Kevin now has three solo albums under his belt: the self-produced solo debut, Timetable (2002); the George Duke-produced, One Life To Love (2008); and the new self-produced, I Live For You (2016). Although Kevin eschews any effort to force him into a category or genre’, he freely admits to defining himself as “primarily a jazz vocalist who just happens to be a Christian”. He exhorts, “I hope I never agree to be just one thing. A true artist never wants that. I have been-and will remain-free to explore the musical universe. There’s too much out here to stay locked into one soundscape forever. Music is big, but Jesus is infinitely bigger. I want to touch his face with everything he puts in my heart to do. I hope people find my new record, I Live For You, refreshing, and dare I say it, groundbreaking.” Includes: Pretty Bird; Somebody Somewhere;Take A Stand (Introducing, CRISIS); I Live For You; Come Back Home; Somebody Said; Strong (For my sister, Charlisa); Truly Unconditional (Introducing, Daphne Delva Smith); and Take A Stand (reprise).
Great compositions, reworked – in a very cool project that takes older recordings from the Decca catalog of classical music, and puts them in the hands of 21st Century producers! The sound is surprisingly great – no dancefloor remixes of Beethoven's 5th, and instead these really thoughtful pieces that extrapolate the original songs in beautiful ways – often mixing their acoustic core with some slight electric elements – in ways that remind us a lot of recent material from Max Richter. The package is clearly done with an ear towards Richter's work – and is similar to projects like this that have been done with the Deutsche Grammophon catalog – and our only complaint is that the notes don't give any information about the original sources of the performances. That's only a very minor issue, though – and the music is more than enough, as you'll hear on Grieg's "Peer Gynt" remixed by Solmon Grey, Erik Satie's "Gnossienne No 1" remixed by STarkey, Faure's "Requiem" remixed by Faultline, Steve Reich's "Six Pianos" remixed by Mr Scruff, Debussy's "String Quartet" remixed by Henrik Schwarz, Holst's "The Planets (Neptune)" remixed by Thomas Gandey, and Schubert's "Schwanengesang" remixed by Kate Simko. ~ Dusty Groove.
GABY HERNANDEZ – SPIRIT REFLECTION
A fantastic record from Gaby Hernandez – a singer we've loved for previous collaborations with Build An Ark and Life Force Trio – but who really knocks it out of the park with this double-length set! The presentation is a bit unusual – in that the entire album is presented with vocal versions of the songs, then a second instrumental take on the tracks – the latter a great showcase for the album's many collaborators – a heavy-duty lineup that features Kamasi Washington, Carlos Nino, Miguel Atwood-Ferguson, Dexter Story, and the Contact Field Orchestra! Gaby's vocals really sine in all this great company – and the musicians have ways to deepen the spirit of her songs, and take things in places that still make us love the music, even after her voice has dropped out. Titles include "Spirit Reflection", "Into Yoa", "Super Nova Lovers", "Baobab Tree", "Messy Love", "Los Mas Dulce", "Stay A While", and "Entranced". (Includes download!) ~ Dusty Groove