Gordon Haskell - The Road To Harry's Bar (m/CD) (DVD)
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Gordon Haskell delivers a phenomenally smooth performance with a group of Polish musicians who the ex-King Crimson vocalist says he wishes he met a long time ago. The Eden Ahbez tune "Nature Boy" sounds like the music of a male counterpart to Sade, eloquent and soothing, as is this entire concert. Haskell's own "Voodoo Dance" from the breakthrough 2002 disc Harry's Bar leans more toward Boz Scaggs than the progressive rock world some might envision. The camera crew does a fine job of capturing all the musicians at work -- there are interesting camera angles on the six-plus-minute "Go Tell Sarah," which could be Gordon Lightfoot going jazz-pop -- and the sound quality is very appealing. The total running time on this DVD is two and a half hours, and it is all delightful. Average White Band's Hamish Stuart gets second billing, but don't let that scare you; he leans toward his work with Paul McCartney and George Benson here and allows the young and gifted lead guitarist Damian Kurasz to take the lead on "Go Tell Sarah." The fusion of the tenor saxophone -- courtesy of Marek Podkowa -- and Jacek Piskorz's keyboards, all perfectly played, give the singer an elegant platform to deliver the 18 songs with no flaws, just a sparkling and continuous display of mellow tones. The melancholy "Al Capone" is a nice change, while the cover of Bill Withers' classic "Ain't No Sunshine" is well suited to Haskell's new musical world. The DVD includes a bonus live video, three video clips, and an extensive 37-and-a-half-minute interview. An intriguing and deeply moving performance and package well worth your time. ~ Joe Viglione