Music: Here's The Deal

Liquid Soul

Last month this CD earned the funky, brass-heavy horde of Chicagoans a Grammy nomination for Best Contemporary Jazz Album, but Ken Burns and Wynton Marsalis might not file it under "Jazz." Foremost a dance band, Liquid Soul makes improvisation take a backseat to grooves aimed at shaking backsides. Sadly, the band freights the album's first half with uninspired chants, and the self-conscious guest vocals by Simone, daughter of Nina, add more sandbags to the balloon. Later on, when everyone shuts up and lets the horns do the singing, it's easier to get up and dance.

--By Benjamin Nugent


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