Alfonzo Blackwell


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Whatever strides saxophonist Alfonso Blackwell made toward incorporating some challenging straight-ahead jazz elements into 2000's The Time Is Now are completely eschewed on this saccharine follow-up. The Time Is Now was no Love Supreme, but compared with the shallow pop of his first two albums, Alfonso appeared to be attempting a reconciliation between the avant-garde and the smooth on "New Jazz Order." No such admirable gestures are to be found on Reflections. Despite a trite and insipid cover of Miles Davis' "All Blues" that turns the mid-'60s classic into a mild, barely funk jam, the album largely consists of light pop ballads. Assuming though, that most contemporary jazz listeners are not looking to be challenged per se, there are enough palatable RB infused tracks here to chalk this entry up as simply more of the same. That said, music as un-reflective as this could cause even the most die-hard post-bopper to wax nostalgic for Grover Washington, Jr. ~ Matt Collar, Rovi