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Soulive are the heirs to the organ trio tradition of Jimmy Smith, Richard "Groove" Holmes, and Reuben Wilson. Eric Krasno's contemplative guitar figures set up washes of blissful organ, which descend from the heavens through the supple fingers of Neal Evans, easing your mind with earth-bound transmissions of pure soul as Alan Evans keeps the groove going on drums. Compositions progress through multiple sections, each with its own simple, catchy melody or break, sometimes repeated until it becomes a ritual; you're satisfied in knowing exactly what's going to come next. The band's improvisations are firmly blues-rooted but branch out into some clever Bop alterations without losing their sense of melody. Krasno's soulful, fluid lines give way to funky, itchy figures well behind the beat, as Evans' organ drones its way deep into your subconscious or noisily states its purpose with Leslie-drenched squeals. These are some of the deepest soul jazz grooves going today.
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