REVIEWS

PAUL T
Steppin' Out [IO]

 

Paul T and Quadmix are better known as purveyors of dance music. But for his debut album, Paul draws from his own background and influences that to even call it acid jazz is somewhat limiting.

Where the grooves are concerned, Paul has veered towards subtlety instead of hitting you right between the eyes. As a result, the songs aren't as immediate as they can be but they do grow on you. If the jazz quotient is high, it also allows Paul to give the songs (and album) a retro feel (circa late '60s/early '70s), especially with the prominence given to the flute and even to the xylophone. Paul has wisely opted for the beat-driven tunes like the title track, FunkDaB3 (whose simplicity is just a way to open up the song) and Dusk to push as singles.

While the opening tracks set the mood, it is Moving On, with some Ritenourish guitar from Clinton Carnegie, that will draw you in. The swing continues with T's Got A Brand New Bag, which is catchy in a cool, retro way; and Phatz, which is more funky than jazzy. Then there is Funky Freak101, which is what Kraftwerk might have sounded like had they used saxophonist Junior Walker instead.

Overall, it's a bit more jaunty for the Cafe Del Mar crowd but still "exotic" enough to entice them; certainly an album that has something for everyone. (7) - Stephen Tan

Click here for a 2002 interview with Paul T


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