On this album Russ Spiegel (electric and acoustic guitars), Jim Gasior (organ), and Lucas Apostoleris (drums) are joined on some tracks by multi-Grammy Award winning trumpeter Brian Lynch and Grammy nominated saxophonist Tim Armacost along with trombonist Javier Nero, Hendrik Meurkens (chromatic harmonica) and singer Ben Beals (on just one number, “Inequitude”). What makes this such an interesting release is the way Spiegel does not hog the centre ground but instead is more than happy to sit back and share the load, so while he and Gasior are often the main focal points he also allows his guests to take the limelight so much so that when I was playing this initially I had it in my head that the bandleader was playing trumpet and not guitar.

This album has been influenced by Spiegel’s trips around the world (I did smile when I read the press release and it was talking about far flung places such as New Zealand, although I do see what they mean) and musically there is certainly a diverse amount of styles on offer. We get samba, blues, nods to Miles Davies, Brazilian tendencies and so much more. There is a wonderful clarity and cleanliness to this release, and it does not sound as if it was recorded in just two days last June – I love the speed at which jazz musicians work, if only more bands did this in other genres. Get into the studio, plug in, check levels, then play and get out again. There is a brightness and Summery feel to this which is compelling, made for the longer days ahead in the Northern Hemisphere.

Rating: 7/10