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Larry Coryell - Coryell CD (album) cover


Larry Coryell


Jazz Rock/Fusion

3.69 | 27 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
4 stars Late-Decade Larry Returns With Infectious, Fiery Groove

Coryell (1969) is the sophomore release by one of Fusion's foundational participants/minds, Larry Coryell, released during the great explosion of Jazz-Rock and Fusion in the late-1960s. The album's drummer is the all-important Bernard Purdie. Fellow Free Spirit Jim Pepper provides reeds, and the responsibility of bass falls on three performers: on acoustic double bass[???], the incredible Ron Carter and the lesser known Albert Stinson, and on electric, for the majority, Chuck Rainey. [The credits here simply don't match up exactly with what's on Wikipedia; someone with the real liner notes should help haha.] I'm unsurprised, but I'm only getting more and more warmed up to this man's work. Hope you enjoy likewise.

"Sex" launches the festivities (quite the opposite to how most affairs begin haha), and with the use of Mike Mandel's organ, I was launched into the stratosphere. Larry's more solid Rock vocals are backed by a steady beat, further fortified by Chuck Rainey's forward driving performance. The spacy effect is only built up with Larry's crunchy, Wah-laden guitar solo. Naturally sexy still, "Beautiful Woman" is next, a bluesy number with soft accompaniment, which opens and speeds up a minute in. Really delightful, and then yet another, much spicier solo from Larry. Sheesh... Give it a try; it's pretty daring and just damn cool.

Back into a solid Blues Rock, though heavier than most from said idiom, "The Jam with Albert" is next, and the longest at over 9 minutes. Coryell's knowledge of the guitar is astounding, and the band is understandably hot fire. Purdie is so badass, and it needs to be said, but I don't think Stinson is even possibly playing an upright here; it's too free-flowing and beefy. These thoughts only arose because he's killing it just much as Pretty Purdie. I'm often hard-pressed to be im-pressed by such an open jam like this, though really that's the context that would be most appropriate to show what you've got as a group (of individuals haha).

The funnily titled "Elementary Guitar Solo No. 5" follows and... I'm just not buying that, Lar [Come on, you're incredible]. After an exact minute of clean soloing, the band enters in for a well-performed Rootsy number as Mandel switches to acoustic piano. Agnostics everywhere, rejoice! "No One Really Knows"! Haha! This number keeps it low and slow, feeling and emotive. After one more 1-minute intro section, Purdie brings us back into a sweet groove. There's plenty to latch onto here (I had to work hard to unfurrow my brow). Some of his guitar solo here is just searing emotion. I'm certainly rejoicing.

"Morning Sickness", despite the name, brings us back into the light. Groovy. This track just moves! Rhythm section with Rainey at the helm is quick and feisty. The mood shifts slightly approaching minute 4 as Larry delivers some angularity and familiar dissonance. Finally, Jim Pepper joins us with sweet, sweet flute on the closer, "Ah Wuv Ooh". The guitar effect used here reminds me of... something from The Beatles. A softer tune, its composition is certainly ear-catching. The crescendo around minute 2 is something mighty powerful. Crazy amount of tension here. With "Sex", this is the best the album had to offer, for sure.

DangHeck | 4/5 |


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