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Album Review

Sachal Vasandani's second CD shows he is maturing as a jazz singer and composer, continuing to refine his approach while landing safely in flat fields of open expanse. His voice rarely wavers or explores upper or lower registers; rather, it stays within a comfort zone that avoids much of a challenge. This consistency serves his songs and his audience well, working within a current trend of singers who stay within specific rhythmic boundaries and don't really push the envelope. Vasandani is helped by pianist Jeb Patton and a backing trio that has been with the vocalist for almost a decade, while co-producers John Clayton and guitarist Doug Wamble give him a bit of a push here and there, mixing up standards with subtle originals. The title track shows the most originality in a steady, repeating, and wistful mode; "Ring Road" (contributed by drummer Quincy Davis) has Vasandani in a playful, ever cool mood; and "Don't Worry About Me" has that contemporary hip-hop rhythm originated by Ahmad Jamal under the singer's slick, level-headed style. The old Joe Williams number "By the River St. Marie" is bopped hard within the controlled dynamics of Vasandani's voice, and he goes for some scat on the intro of the combo tune "Once in a While" and Patton's "Horizons." The group covers the chestnuts "No More" and Thelonious Monk's "Monk's Dream," both with lyrics penned by Jon Hendricks, but the results are not optimal or perfect. Where the singer is most convincing crops up in an elegant, confident manner on "Escape/There's a Small Hotel," but especially during "There Are Such Things," a serene interpretation that comes straight from the heart. The most unusual arrangement is more in a baroque or chamber style on the low-key "Royal Eyes," which merges effectively into a small samba. After two recordings, Sachal Vasandani has found somewhat of a niche, but needs to ramp it up creatively and take more chances in order to stand out from the small group of contemporary male jazz vocalists. ~ Michael G. Nastos, Rovi

Biography

Born: Chicago, IL

Genre: Jazz

Years Active: '00s

Sachal Vasandani was born in Chicago, and listened to his parents' modern jazz records, pop music by the Beatles and Michael Jackson, and the East Indian music of his heritage. In college at the University of Michigan he studied economics, and was instructed in the U-M's jazz and classical music programs. Arriving in New York City as a Wall Street investment banker, Vasandani soon discovered the lure of music was too strong. He found himself talented enough to make a go as a jazz vocalist and worked...
Full bio
We Move, Sachal Vasandani
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  • 8,99 €
  • Genres: Jazz, Music, Vocal Jazz
  • Released: 15 September 2009

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