Meanwhile, Lorber continued as a instrumental music leader, putting out a series of solid contemporary/smooth jazz albums.
Meanwhile, Lorber continued as a instrumental music leader, putting out a series of solid contemporary/smooth jazz albums. Now Is the Time, Lorber's latest album, is a good quality overview of the music that he has released over his 30 plus year career. On it, Lorber largely goes back to his fusion roots and avoids the sound-alike rut that has plagued some modern smooth jazz. This is especially true on featured tracks like the opening number, "Mysterious Traveler" and on the up-tempo track "Chinese Medicinal Herbs."
It is refreshing whenever a musician like Lorber chooses to challenge his listeners by reintroducing them to daring music like jazz-fusion. It was also refreshing to see how Lorber is willing to kick up the jazz quotient on the R&B influenced tunes that he includes on Now Is the Time. That is definitely the case on the ballad "Curtains/Before We Go." This song combines the accessible R&B that Lorber made starting in the 1980s with some deft jazz musicianship.
With its radio friendly R&B songs and instrumentals that cover the scope of electrified jazz, Now Is the Time is a listener's album. Lorber engages any person who has been into his music from the time he broke out with Jeff Lorber Fusion until now. Now Is the Time stands as one of those instances when the effort to provide something for everybody creates something worthwhile for everybody. Recommended.
By Howard Dukes