Earth + Sky

Andy Summers

Ever since the Police folded up in 1984, guitarist Andy Summers has made more than his fair share of eclectic records. And why not? At least he hasn’t fallen prey to the almighty commercial dollar like his buddy Sting. Whether collaborating with far-out visionaries like Robert Fripp or rubbing out his own flavor of new age instrumental music, Summers has consistently stayed true to his own textural style -- delicately weaving a remarkably unique tone no matter which idiom it settles into. In recent years the guitarist has paid tribute to some of his influences and recorded two records filled with the music of Thelonious Monk and Charles Mingus. Inspired from the experience, Summers has released Earth + Sky, an album of original, jazz-flavored forays resonating with incendiary interplay and even-keeled balance. To make things deliciously more musical, he is backed by a stellar cast of musicians that includes drummer Vinnie Colaiuta, bassist Abraham Laboriel, keyboardists John Novello and John Beasley, and saxophonist Katisse Buckingham. The combination is tight, respectful, and grooving. Catapulting from the timbre of “Above The World” to the morose “Now I’m Free” and right into the sauciness of “The Diva Station” is a true sonic joy. The alluring title track, among several others, captures the band in a roundabout work-out, while “Circus” and the closing “I Choose You” showcase Summers’ dexterous touch in an intimate setting. Want to learn more about the vastly underrated guitarist of the Police? Earth + Sky gives you a nice and well-rounded crash course in a little over 50 minutes.

~ Shawn Perry

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