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Beat's n Bobs

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Album Review

Sticking with the proven formula of electronic musicians trying to be jazz musicians, Jason Robertson's Aqua Bassino project clearly owes a lot of influence to St. Germain and more importantly, the original smoky lounge jazz from which both artists' music is based. The overused trumpet solo on "Welcome Home" is only underwhelmed by the exhausted jazzy house of "Baby C'mon." And that's not even mentioning the downright tragic attempt at vocal R&B on "Love Is Here to Stay." With these three major flaws out of the way in the first four tracks, things can only look up. The soft, beatless piano of "Moon Light" is pensive enough to be believably moving, while "Milano Bossa" has just enough swing to make it acceptable for classier dancefloors. "Spirits With Jiwe" gets in touch with true African music, courtesy of co-writer and guest vocalist Nahawa Doumbia, who has given the same authentic touch to fellow F Communications artist Frederic Galliano. The most aggressively original moment comes courtesy of vocalist Jill Vader's spoken rant on "To Hard, Try & Find," which evidentially induced Robertson to forget all the soft vibes and frame her unique patter with a focused electronic kick and uncredited male vocal interplay. To say that Aqua Bassino is predictable would not be entirely fair. To say that it is too safe in some places would be more than appropriate.

Beat's n Bobs, Aqua Bassino
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