Picks and Pans Review: Jarreau
updated 05/09/1983 AT 01:00 AM EDT
•originally published 05/09/1983 AT 01:00 AM EDT
The miraculous instrument that is Al Jarreau's voice has never been better displayed than on this album. One tune in particular, Boogie Down, which Jarreau wrote with Michael Omartian, demonstrates his ability to blend jazz, funk and neo-disco into an exciting, fluid sound that is something altogether new. Nor has Jarreau ever been more sensitive with ballads; his reading of Jeremy Lubbock's Not Like This, for instance, evokes the best touches of Johnny Mathis, Nat King Cole and Billy Daniels that occasionally flash through Jarreau's style. And he does it in the most original, nonderivative way. Jarreau is also nicely served on this album by his arrangements, especially those for the horn section by trumpeter Jerry Hey. At 43, Jarreau is at the peak of his talent.