Reviewed by Graeme Crawford
Although veteran guitar virtuoso Phil Keaggy's name appears first in the band name, he is not the focus here, it is a collaborative effort with two other excellent musicians. Some will remember drummer John Sferra as the man behind the kit with Glass Harp. Then there is keyboardist Jack Giering, who is really the driving force behind this project. After suffering seven serious heart attacks and virtually losing his voice due to an emergency tracheostomy, Giering makes a spectacular return having written all the tracks here. It has been described as an exploration of the journey between life and death, but it is difficult to know exactly as it is purely instrumental. There is very much a jazz feel running through the album, mainly due to Sferra's drumming style, however it takes in elements of rock, funk, blues and R&B along the way. The swooping spacey intro of the title track gives way to a blues rock workout, while "Porchpuppy Theme" is in a much more meditational blues vein. "New Day" brings in the rock and roll, before the funky vibes of "How's It Feel" add another dimension to the album. There are plenty of quiet moments too (see "Thin Ice" and "Our Girls"), but through it all it is Keaggy's mastery of his instrument that comes to the fore. There really is not anything left to say about this legend, other than it sounds like he has had a great time relaxing with some old friends, and laying down some fantastic guitar work to someone else's ideas. Anyone who follows Keaggy, or who just enjoys some fantastic musicianship, should not let the lack of vocals dissuade them from checking this out.
The opinions expressed in this article are
not necessarily those held by Cross Rhythms. Any expressed
views were accurate at the time of publishing but may or may
not reflect the views of the individuals concerned at a
Interested in reviewing music? Find out