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More Than The Best by Count Basic

This is a tough mixture of vocals and instrumentals that are filled with funk and no-nonsense grooves.

The first track, "4 Oceans" reminds me of an Earth Wind & Fire production of the Emotions, but updated for the new millennium. Anyone remember Rodney Franklin, Roy Ayers and the like? You get a taste of this vibe in "Wes who" and the guitar solo is "bumpin'" like Wes, Montgomery, that is. We revisit Maze's classic "Joy + Pain" which is just as sweet and mellow as the original; guitar takes the cue from Frankie Beverly's vocal. While it's a jazz flavor, it could satisfy more than one listening audience.

"License to Kill" is the ultimate defense of romance. Kelli Sae's vocals and the lyrics don't play. It's a haunting and ready for a soundtrack. "In Love with Life" and "Trust Your Instincts" incorporate Sae's sexy vocals over penetrating grooves that don't quit, and the electricity here could pleasantly short-circuit an unsuspecting listener. "Instincts" leans more on the romantic while "In Love With Life" is energetic and positive.

In "One More Chance," Sae gives an emotionally positive plea, with gospel flavored background vocals that are filled with inspiration. Of course, the musicians are right there to raise the spirit and spread the joy.

Instrumentals such as "On the Move," "M.L. In the Sunshine" and "Chasing the Sunset" are beautiful and satiny like a cruise down the beach in a sassy convertible. They are breezy and peaceful. Guitar melody sings along like an adult lullaby for lazy days.

This is good listening with consistent performances that are worth the attention. It should appeal to a wide audience as it doesn't fill just one bag.

Additional Info

  • Artist / Group Name: Count Basic
  • CD Title: More Than The Best
  • Genre: Acid Jazz
  • Year Released: 2001
  • Record Label: Instinct Records
  • Rating: Five Stars
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