Picks and Pans Review: Far from Home

updated 05/16/1994 AT 01:00 AM EDT

originally published 05/16/1994 AT 01:00 AM EDT


A Traffic reunion is a great idea, but that's not what this is. Co-founder Chris Wood is long dead, and sometime Traffic man Dave Mason is now a member of the revamped Fleetwood Mac. Which leaves Traffic frontman Steve Winwood jamming with original drummer Jim Capaldi, who cowrote most of these 10 songs. As with the Traffic of old, it's Winwood's soulful tenor and churchlike organ playing that will attract listeners. When these elements are combined with Winwood's Chris Wood-style flute trilling on the song "Here Comes a Man," the results do have the smoky, jazzy and slightly spacey feel of circa-'69 Traffic. But more often the tracks are in the tradition of Steve Winwood, solo superstar: "Every Night, Every Day," with its gut-bucket piano and foot-stomping chorus, is a surefire party-starter like his 1988 hit "Roll with It." So, nice as a new Traffic album would be, let's just call this a Winwood/Capaldi reunion—the fruit is no less tasty. (Virgin)

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