While its sound is firmly based in the Godfather of Soul's fiery, snaking, forceful funk, Liquid Soul folds samples and DJ cuts into its mix, along with nods to rock, jazz, drum & bass, and hip-hop. Leader-saxophonist Mars Williams -- also a player in the Windy City's free-jazz scene -- has a sumptuous, blues-drenched approach, complemented by the bristling, torrid tone of trumpeter Hugh Ragin. (Living Colour's Vernon Reid contributes some terse, incendiary guitar.) Best of all, Liquid Soul peppers the festivities with bursts of shredding, unfettered jazz skronk without compromising the revelry. One-Two Punch is an eclectic, all-out party in handy CD form.
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