Kaori Kobayashi - SEVENth

I've been waiting to give this one a listen. After her last album, Kaori and her sax were on crumbling ground. She was talented, but whoever was in charge of producing her work seemed to be meddling with true potential. Or at least, I thought so.

Let's just give a song a listen. I'd like you all to know that today's featured track is not my favorite, as that one isn't all too easily accessible. Most of these tracks are pretty unheard of.

Instead we're giving a listen to something a bit simpler where she's comfortable to take a back seat but is more than ready to jump on in on her turn and shred with her sax.

Give Driver's Meeting a listen.

I believe the string instrument co-leading this track is a shamisen (because of the swift string cuts) but it could also be a koto.. or maybe I'm wrong on both accounts and it's another Asian string-instrument. Those aren't my forte.

Whatever it is, it's what gives this track life. It's a traditional-seeming sound combined with the Jazz to make the Fusion that Kaori Kobayashi strives for. It's a good thing to aim for, and it's what she attempts with her latest album 'SEVENth'.

Album art/cover
Buy CD
The album is a step in the right direction from her previous work, but there's still a way to go. At least I'd feel much more comfortable attending a live performance after this, as a lot of these tracks are of fine composition quality.

The flute track for example is great, displaying a nice little groove. Could be better, but it's an accent in an album with much funkier sounds.

Another odd switch up that I don't know how I feel about is the delving into Rock. Not just any rock usually, but "hard" stuff.

Though I admit that if not for the Rock influences, my favorite track, Europe, might not be in there. Go ahead and give that a listen, that's a cover of Santana's classic Europa. For a sax cover? I like it better than Gato Barbieri's version.

Overall the album is pretty sweet. Far from perfect, still a bit generic, but way better than her previous stuff. Being her own producer suits her. And if you like the day's track, you should consider giving the album a shot.
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  1. It was interesting. I'm not sure where I stand on this because I did like the Jazz but the shamisen was a bit jarring at times.

    1. If the shamisen is the main issue, you'll probably enjoy the album. You only hear the instrument on this song.

  2. Not really my "thing" but good...

  3. Not my cup o tea, unless Im drinking tea in an asian province

  4. I love it! My daughter, the Spawn, listens to her and if this album isn't already in her collection, it will be by the end of the day. I just listened to the cover of Europa and was thrilled with it. This is a major talent at work here with some stellar musicians-beautiful.

  5. Not at all something I liked even a little.

  6. The beginning got me wanting one type of song then the song changed to another type of song. Great song but that beginning really miss lead me!

  7. Sounds like a great album. I'm following you for more. Check me out aswell:D


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