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Curt Cress - Curt Cress Clan CD (album) cover


Curt Cress


Jazz Rock/Fusion

3.08 | 12 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
3 stars The debut album from one of the '70s best drummers is an undemanding but energetic collection of instrumental Jazz-Funk not far removed from the Fusion grooves of PASSPORT, in which Cress was still a member at the time. As with his parent band, the influence of WEATHER REPORT looms large, but here the playing leans more gently on the crutch of virtuosity, opting instead for a simpler, sunny vibe with lots of infectious jamming.

CCC practiced a slightly condensed variation of the classic Passport style, which even at its height (circa "Cross-Collateral", released the same year as this effort) was never very complex. Trade the Space Rock synths and sequencers for common electric pianos and a Hohner Clavinet, eliminate the distinctive Wandrey's Studio cover art, and Passport might have looked something like this, moving gracefully from the strutting '70s funkathons of "From the Back" and the cryptically titled "451271" to the bluesy "Shuffle on Out", arranged in a nimble rhythmic count of fifteen.

The album misses the dynamic saxophone of Passport's main man Klaus Doldinger, but the flugelhorn in the song "Fields" was a nice addition, alongside the more prominent electric guitars (Volker Kriegel was an adept pupil in the John McLaughlin school of performance). The drumming of course is impeccable throughout, played as always with deceptively simple yet sophisticated ease, occasionally giving way to a brief, frenzied storm of pure Fusion pyrotechnics, in the appropriately titled "Cyclone" and later during "Movin' Right Along".

The material may be lightweight, but this is an album that would sit comfortably on a shelf alongside the early solo efforts of BILL BRUFORD, and it's hard to imagine a higher compliment. Three solid stars.

Neu!mann | 3/5 |


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