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Passport - Looking Thru CD (album) cover

LOOKING THRU

Passport

 

Jazz Rock/Fusion

3.33 | 38 ratings

From Progarchives.com, the ultimate progressive rock music website

Neu!mann
Prog Reviewer
3 stars The fourth album from Germany's premier Fusion ensemble saw Klaus Doldinger and company finally hitting their stride: the band had settled into a stable line-up, and the music was fast approaching its cosmic jazz-funk zenith. That opening burst of synths and mellotron at the top of "Eternal Spiral" signaled a further shift in style toward the rockier end of the Jazz Rock spectrum, emphasized by a dramatic volley of drumming by the peerless Curt Cress, always a great way to kick-start an album.

What follows is often too straightforward for traditional Fusion. The title track showcases Doldinger's deft touch with a tenor sax throughout eight enjoyable minutes of carefree grooving. And the melodic 4/4 beat driving ersatz pop tunes like "Rockport" and "Tarantula" make both resemble theme songs to some long-forgotten '70s TV sit-com, although each has a toe-tapping catchiness that can't be denied.

The music stretches out more during the album's latter half, but not enough to seriously challenge the listener's enjoyment. "Eloquence" opens with a bit of primitive (hand-triggered) electronic percussion. And Doldinger's freeform playing on the closing "Things to Come" promises exactly that: a brief preview of the band's more adventurous "Cross-Collateral", released the following year.

It's not what anyone would call a groundbreaking effort, and was never intended as such. But "Looking Thru" remains one of the more pleasant collections of instrumental music listed on this site: the perfect headphone escape from the plummeting temperatures of mid-January (as I write this, in the American Northeast). The album has so far earned an almost unanimous good-but-not-essential rating, and I'm not prepared to buck that trend. But my own three stars are at least offered with a little more enthusiasm than some.

Neu!mann | 3/5 |

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