Taylor's Universe -
Across The Universe

(CD, 2015, 49:00, Marvel Of Beauty Records MOBCD 026)

The tracks:
  1- Salon Bleu 2015(5:33)
  2- Firestone 2015(6:35)
  3- Days Run Like Horses 2015(6:58)
  4- Fame 2015(6:20)
  5- Tortugas 2015(7:35)
  6- Haunted Yellow House 2015(7:31)
  7- Mooncake 2015(4:28)

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Taylor's Universe is one of the bands around Danish musician and multi-instrumentalist Robin Taylor whose music has been reviewed by Background Magazine before, with his fine 2015 album From Scratch (see review). Before that, he already made some 20 other CDs and so a compilation might come in handy to introduce the music to a wider audience. Well, that opportunity is here now.

Across The Universe contains a selection of highlights from the later repertoire of Taylor's Universe - here in altered 2015 versions: rearranged, partly re-recorded, remixed and remastered with a group of musicians assembled especially for the occasion, although most of his usual collaborators are here. Interestingly long-time collaborator Karsten Vogel (the famous sax player who was in bands like Secret Oyster) is no longer part of the band. His place is taken by Jakob Mygind who already played on previous albums. Mygrind gets a rather central role on opening track Salon Bleu 2015 (one of the re-recordings) that closes with a fine synthesizer part that sounds like Jan Hammer. Unsure if it's played by Taylor himself or by Thomas Thor Videro Ulstrup or even guest Frank Carvalho.
I'm not going to describe each track individually. The seven instrumental tracks are a perfect showcase for what a great band Taylor's Universe is and what great music they have made in the past years. Delicious music that moves effortlessly between jazz-rock fusion and instrumental progressive rock with various instruments stepping to the front and then leaving the stage to others, all build on great atmospheres as very well illustrated by the gradual build-up of Days Run Like Horses 2015.
Just to finish off with two possible favourites from this CD. Haunted Yellow House 2015 opens with keyboard sounds that again remind me a lot of Jan Hammer and I can hear time and time again. And Mooncake 2015 has a guitar-led start, then great organ that reminds of 1970s greats like Rare Bird.

Explore this Universe!

****- Carsten Busch (edited by Astrid de Ronde)

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