MAYSA OUT OF THE BLUE
US N-Coded Music CD, 2002
1) Friendly Pressure 2) Out of the Blue 3) Spirit (Interlude) 4) Head to the Sky 5) Simple Life 6) Right Here Right Now 7) MSDF Interlude 8) Mr. So Damn Fine 9) I Want You (Interlude) 10) Blue Horizon 11) Osaka 12) Everything 13) Tailor Made Love 14) If It's Love 15) Thank You (Interlude) 16) (Bonus Track) Family Affair
Produced by Rex Rideout Maysa's third solo effort (the previous ones being Maysa in 1995
and All My Life in 2000) opens very nicely indeed,
with the compelling mid-floater Friendly Pressure
complete with a guitar solo by Ronny Jordan,
and, luckily enough, the rest of the CD continues along equally classy lines.
Rex Rideout - whom we of course remember best from his
frequent collaborations with Will Downing -
already wrote for and played on Maysa's debut,
and his production style here seems to suit Maysa extremely well,
especially on the tracks with a more acoustic approach in the arrangement.
My personal favourites include the title cut -
similar with Friendly Pressure and very much in
the Incognito mould with Gary Thomas'
flute solo crowning the track - the beautifully serene version
of Earth, Wind & Fire's Head to the Sky and the bassy mid-stepper
Tailor Made Love. On these tracks, Maysa is assisted by the
likes of Wah Wah Watson, Sekou Bunch, Paulinho Da Costa and Michael White.
I also especially liked Maysa's interpretation
on the more stripped-down beat ballad If It's Love.
One of the strengths of the album is that there are no duds at all,
and with Maysa's vocals still the very embodiment of soulful elegance,
this is highly recommendable to all her fans. (7) - PR