Larry Coryell, Victor Bailey, Lenny White Trio – Electric (almost live)
Larry Coryell – Guitar
Victor Bailey – Bass
Lenny White – Drums
That lineup conjures musical magic in the minds of Jazz Rock fans, and rightfully so. Larry Coryell was a true Jazz Rock pioneer and arguably inventor as well. Lenny White the legendary drummer in Return to Forever and on the groundbreaking Miles Davis Bitches Brew recordings, is a monster often overlooked by fans in favor of flashier style drummers. Victory Bailey originally “that guy that took over for Pastorius��? in Weather Report has grown into a phenomenal musician in every respect. Then for the icing on the cake, the Cd is on Chesky, well known for their extremely high quality recordings. I was really putting high expectations on this recording for all those reasons.
For those of you not familiar with Home Theater or Multi-Channel recordings, you might experience an ambience you’re not used to. Anyone with a DVD-Audio or SACD player will tell you. Don’t let that fool you, the recording is really amazing and I enjoyed both Stereo and Multi-Channel listening.
If there’s an issue with the performance on this Cd, you have to keep in mind that the type of recording made here is virtually live in the studio. If anyone remembers the vinyl Direct to Disk recordings, I’m sure they’ll also remember the performances were usually not as polished as a typical studio productions. Same thing here, basically because the recording is so good, you hear every nuance of sound and most of us are not used to that. Consequently you will also hear flaws that might have been mixed into oblivion by standard studio productions. In addition this type of recording is like performing in the Olympics, you get one chance – there’s no “takeovers��?. I have several Direct to Disk records including the Japanese released VSOP “Five Stars��? , Herbie Hancock’s “Direct Step��?, Paul Jackson’s “Black Octopus��? and The Great Jazz Trio’s “Direct from LA��?, and they all have wrong notes, missed beats, and other minor flaws that would have probably been fixed in a standard recording.
I personally found the music on Electric to be disappointing at first, but dismiss that as having expectations that were not realistic and may revise that statement after a few more listens. In addition, this is not a recording of some young Jazz Rockers trying to blow your socks off. Rather, it’s the sound of a relaxed trio of exceptional veterans playing some fun stuff together. They play a Led Zeppelin tune, a Sly Stone tune, a Miles Davis classic, and some original compositions. None of them show the slightest effort to push the envelope or break new ground, it’s just good stuff.
Overall, this may not be the best Jazz Rock recording ever made, but it is certainly worth owning. Take your testosterone level down a few notches, sit back and enjoy a live concert by three of the finest musicians of our times.