Alien Army, the name of the disc, is also the name of this new Big Apple-based band led by guitarist Jack Wilkins.
At a time when the adult contemporary airwaves are saturated with jazz wannabees, Wilkins offers modern music rooted in tradition, filled with energy, and rock-solid in its depth. Wilkins' collaborators both as performers and writers are drummer Mike Clark (back from last year's fine Wilkins outing Call Him Reckless), the double bassist Michael Formanek, and keyboard player Marc Puricelli.
The band's inability to be pigeonholed makes the listening all the more fun. Wilkins & Co. constantly are throwing surprises into the mix. Just when your feet get used to tapping along to the lively swing of one passage of a weird medley called Fun Fat, things turn avant-garde. Puricelli's No Time but Now is an R&B-rooted burn.
Wilkins shifts from electric guitar to acoustic for the lovely gypsy-tinged original Moon Rain, which is enriched by Puricelli's haunting synthesizer work. Other dandies include She's the One, Barcelona Rising and a wishful ballad aptly called Romance.
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Review "Alien Army"