Deftly combining such diverse influences as Afrobeat, Afro-Cuban jazz, salsa, funk, samba—plus its namesakes jazz and soul—Ottawa's terrific Souljazz Orchestra stirs up a wonderfully infectious brew that sizzles and pops, gets seriously spiritual, and bristles with exuberance. The ferocious spirits of Fela, James Brown, John Coltrane, Dizzy Gillespie, and the Fania All Stars haunt Souljazz's music, but don't strictly define it. The sextet finds its own groove, with a three-piece horn section whose supple strength is reminiscent of Tower of Power, Pierre Chrétien's piano, and a maelstrom of cross-cultural polyrhythms from Philippe Lafrenière and Marielle Rivard.... More >>>