What makes Dave Short's Sax Therapy unique? Really, it is all about the arrangements. How often do you hear arrangements for 6 saxes and rhythm section? Almost never. The album starts out on a joyous note with Roger Hogan's arrangement of "Joy Spring" featuring vocalist Noel Ross. The warmth of the album continues with a modern rendition of the Mancini classic "Dreamsville", the smoothest tune on the album. Then is the somewhat whimsical Jeff Jones original "Gus The Cat" named after Jeff's favorite pet. The next tune, "Easy Living" features baritone saxophonist Kim Davis with a fabulous arrangement by Jeff Jones that includes a saxophone soli section reminiscent of the great big bands of the swing era. Noel then returns with "Raise The Roof", a swinging tune that starts quietly, but builds steadily to a final frenzy. The album then turns to a Latin motif with "Song For My Father" followed by "Shaker Song". The arranging talent of Jeff Jones is then quite apparent in "Jeannine". The melody in this tune is liberally spread among all of the members in the ensemble creating a mosaic of sound (and creating a nightmare for the mixing engineer!). "Bernie's Tune" features solos by many of the band members, and is an example of the arranging prowess of John Gonsalves. The album ends on a quirky note, first with Noel and her somewhat psychotic "Twisted", and finally with Jeff's "Sphere", which I would characterize as a depiction of a very dysfunctional family sitting down to dinner. Fortunately poppa (Bruce Calin on bass) is able to restore some measure of order to the dining proceedings and bring the tune to an ordered conclusion!
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