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Long Night Out

Brian Culbertson

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Album Review

Brian Culbertson's major label debut Long Night Out is a one-man band tour de force. All those years of sequestering himself away in his bedroom/recording studio have paid off. Except for a few other musicians, Culbertson writes and performs all the music himself. Instead of a vapid "look ma, no band" effort, the tracks sparkle with creativity. On the laid-back opener "City Lights," Culbertson lays down a swaying groove punctuated by muted trumpet, elegant piano, and lazy, lower register electric guitar runs. It's great for a midnight drive. "Heroes of the Dawn" conveys optimism through its use of syncopated percussion and interwoven horn lines. The lilting "Beautiful Liar" has solid acoustic piano and tasteful fuzz guitar by Harry Hmora. The double time-tempoed "Double Exposure" smoothly glides along atop a sinewy melody. The strutting "Horizon" has a unison lead line that consist of Culbertson's piano and the muted trumpet of Scott Hall-Harmon. Amid a bell-like synth pad Culbertson's piano weaves a romantic motif on "Alone With You." Don't listen to this one alone. Based around a telegraphic-like riff, the title track brassily chugs along on with the lead duties handled by saxophonist Mark Colley. The languid, ethereal "Changing Tides" has intermittent vocal riffing by Damian Smith and soft cello by Michelle Akin. Culbertson dedicates a track to a popular Chicago fairway, "Fullerton Ave." The closer, "Twilight," showcases a jaunty clarinet that somehow manages to keep a solemn tone amid the dynamic double stops.

Biography

Born: 12 January 1973 in Decatur, IL

Genre: Jazz

Years Active: '90s, '00s, '10s

Even though Brian Culbertson might be categorized as jazz lite, his music has enough "oomph" to keep you interested. The talented composer, arranger, keyboardist, and trombonist displayed a talent beyond his years at an early age, and credits his dad with helping him develop an ear for the type of music he makes. His father, Jim Culbertson, a respected high school jazz band director and trumpeter, cultivated a love of sanguine sounds in the young Brian, who eagerly listened to anything his dad put...
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Long Night Out, Brian Culbertson
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