The progressive vibe of fusion never sounded better as bassis/producer Scott Petito brings together a set of all stars for ten swinging beauties. He mixes and matches drummers Omar Hakim, Peter Erskine, Simon Phillips and Jack DeJohnette in bands of various sizes and shapes, along with either David Sanious or Rachel Z at the piano/keyboards and Mike Mainieri/vib, Bashiri Johnson/perc, Chris Pasin/tp, David Spinozza/g and Bob Mintzer/ts providing grooves, harmonies and lines.
The team veers between vintage Weather Report and Return to Forever, which makes sense with guys like Hakim and Erskine riding shotgun. A boppy Corea-esque “The Sequence of Events” has Rachel Z and Mintzer doing some wonderful Latin work, while Phillips adds a deep groove with Pasin’s trumpet on “The Sanguine Penguin.” The team rollicks like WR on “Sli-Fi” and gets spacey during “ Lawns” with Mainieri’s vibes adding mystique to the atmosphere.
As for Petito, he’s a master throughout, doing a wondrous duet with DeJohnetter on “Symbol Bells,” creating rich textures and palpable colors on “Dark Pools” or chiming in a bigger band context with his piccolo bass on the alluring title track. Everything here sounds fresh and explorative, all while keeping the pulse like 400 meter runner. Check this one out!