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Soul Express Album of the Month - February 2007

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Thinking of You
(US Regina records, 2006)

1) Lovely Day feat. Jeff Lorber 2) Yearning for Your Love 3) Thinking of You 4) Walking in the Rhythm feat. Richard Elliot 5) Creepin' feat. Rick Braun 6) It's in Your Vibe 7) When Somebody Loves You Back 8) Butterflies 9) For the Cool in You 10) What's Going On

Victor Fields' fourth set Thinking of You (US Regina, 2006) contains lots of cover material, but also some first class new compositions. Today Victor reminds me lot of Jon Lucien, and I was not surprised to see him pick This Could Be Paradise (from Lucien's 1997 album Endless Is Love) to his previous CD. This time he decides to cover Bill Withers' Lovely Day, Luther Vandross' Creepin' and Teddy Pendergrass' When Somebody Loves You Back, among others, all of which are set in a smooth jazz backdrop with names like Rick Braun, Jeff Lorber, Nelson Braxton and Nicolas Bearde contributing. Very enjoyable versions, actually.

However, the real gems on the album are new tunes. The title track is a heavenly mid-paced ballad on which Victor virtually duets the song with saxophonist Vince Lars. The song is one of the best new compositions I've heard in recent years. Jeff Lorber is among the song-writers, and he also provides another new tune on the album, the relaxed swayer It's In Your Vibe, which reminds me of Walter Beasley's best efforts, especially when Vince Lars is again blowing his sax all through the track.

Victor Fields albums have been getting more and more popular especially among the smooth jazz buyers, which is really no wonder, when he uses so much smooth jazz musicians providing the backgrounds. If you like the vocal tracks typically included in every smooth jazz CD, here you have a whole album of the same, smooth and sophisticated style. Highly recommended for lovers of smooth jazz flavoured quality soul.

- Ismo Tenkanen
Soul Express

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