Picks and Pans Review: Journey to a Rainbow
The subtleties of Mangione's music and style are best suited to small groups. He and his flugelhorn take a phrase and examine it from all sides, inside and out, squinting and wide-eyed, the way someone scrutinizes a diamond; it's hard to do with a crowd on the bandstand. That's the main reason this quintet album is just about the perfect vehicle for Mangione. It includes some of his warmest, most contemplative tunes—Song for a Latin Lady and Do I Dare to Fall in Love, to name two—and he leaves plenty of improvising room for his side-men, especially Chris Vadala, on flutes, sax and piccolo, and guitarist Peter Harris. Mangione himself is in fine form, not pressing his technique—just laying out bright, pretty lines in the calm, reserved way that he all but has a patent on.