Smooth cyber jazz quartet Gemini Soul has released their fourth studio album The Nefertiti Xperience. Produced, arranged and composed by the band’s frontman and bass guitarist Andre Ajamu Akinyele, the album is what Akinyele describes as cyber-jazz, creating a blend of jazz/funk fusion fringed by electronic elements. Those electronic elements form squiggly lines in tracks like "Serpent’s Tongue" and "Oliver Jones" which bare a resemblance to Herbie Hancock’s ingenuity. In the case of Gemini Soul, the concepts are inspired by the Sun Goddess, Queen Nefertiti and show influences of Hancock’s fusion album "Head Hunters," the music of vocalist/bassist MeShell Ndegeocello, singer Sade, trumpeter/composer Miles Davis and bassists Marcus Miller and Stanley Clarke.
Though Gemini Soul pride themselves on their funk-jazz fusion sound, their silky smooth jazz lines cannot be overlooked. Tracks like "Compared To What" and "Sphinx" weave silky webs of lounging jazz textures with the curling motions of keyboardist Jon O’Bergh fortified by the gentle pivots of bassist Akinyele and the lamina threads of percussionist Andrew Foster and drummer Alex Marks. The music wraps the listener in beautifully beaded tones and synchronized movements that glide in blissful decibels. The serenity of Gemini Soul’s music produces muffled amalgams that move to a rhythmic Nubian-like dance displaying freedom and grace like in "Sun Goddess."
The cool rhythmic slides of "River Nile" and "The Eye Of Horus" demonstrate the band’s ability to keep the music tranquil while supplementing it with delicate sprigs and nuances that beautify the piece. Smooth buttery lines stream through "Nefertiti Theme," the title track and "Vertigo" which provide a cozy nightclub atmospheric, while the curvy bass grooves of "Chance To Grow" make its lower registers swell with elegant pronouncing. The keyboard driven "Radical" is a vast release of energy and dynamic spreads and the cool jazz struts of "Black Venus" keep the mix feeling heady.
As always, San Francisco’s Gemini Soul has music that is modern-eclectic smooth jazz funk. Their latest release The Nefertiti Xperience produces comfortable instrument harmonies beaded by electronic improvisations. Their movements show traditional sensibilities and forward-thinking artistry. Their music defines a burgeoning group of jazz musicians who haven’t reached their peak but are enjoying their ascent. With influences of smooth jazz, funk, and electronic factions, the culmination is a new wave of jazz music for audiences to experience.