Track: Crianza
RATING: 87/100

Guitarist Dave Stryker lends both tastefully restrained fretwork and this composition to flutist Mark Weinstein’s latest album. On this lovely, minstrel-inspired ballad, each band member is allowed to stretch his harmonic concepts. Bassist Ed Howard puts in a flowing solo followed by Stryker’s tender acoustic guitar rendering. The format of guitar, flute and bass has a somewhat medieval quality, and when Weinstein’s airy flute enters the fray he extends the fairytale feel. Victor Lewis gently pushes the tune along with sparse but tasteful use of a subdued marching snare and shimmering cymbals work. When Lewis is set loose toward the close of the song, he responds with consummate taste and style. This almost-baroque composition is an unusual vehicle for these musicians, who can easily let fly on more up-tempo material. But it is a perfect showcase for Weinstein’s pristine tone and the band’s astute ability to adapt to the context of their material.

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