Album Review: Breathless, by Terence Blanchard ft. The E-Collective

Terrence Blanchard performing

Terrence Blanchard

Terence Blanchard has been a strong and active member of the New Orleans jazz scene for decades, working on movie scores and solo work. Breathless is Blanchard's 15th solo outing, and its title references the death of Eric Garner at the hands of New York policemen, which inspired a fair portion of the album. The songs with lyrics are often politically charged, especially "Talk to Me" and title track "Breathless," which infuses hip-hop and R&B into the contemporary jazz that is front and center throughout the album. The album is full of tracks that use typical jazz instruments with synths to create a soothing and almost hypnotic sound, such as "Midnight" and "Samadhi." The album is not afraid to branch out, as exemplified by faster paced tracks with powerful drums, such as "Compared to What" and "Tom and Jerry." 

All in all, Breathless is an example of an excellent artist at the top of his game. It is powerful at times, soothing at others, but never boring or uninspired. If you like jazz or have ever been interested in jazz, check out Breathless

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