DAVID SANCIOUS — Transformation (The Speed Of Love) (review)

DAVID SANCIOUS — Transformation (The Speed Of Love) album cover Album · 1976 · Fusion Buy this album from MMA partners
3.5/5 ·
js
This album came out during a short period in music when the worlds of jazz-rock fusion and progressive rock were moving closer to each other. Return to Forever's prog-rock leaning 'Romatic Warrior' and Yes' addition of fusionist Patrick Moraz to their lineup and their subsequent albums with him epitomized this tendency. Meanwhile rock and RnB artists from EW&F to Frank Zappa were freely mixing elements from both genres. With its mix of grandiose synthesizer constructions, hyper funk-fusion workouts and virtuoso synth and guitar leads, David Sancious' 'Transformation (Speed of Love)' had all the right elements together at the right time.

This album opens with 'Piktor's Metamorphisis', a jazz-rock processional tune with lots of great synth soloing that is equal parts Jan Hammer and ELP. This is followed by a Jimi Hendrix tribute called 'Sky Church Hymn #9' in which David shows that he isn't too bad on the guitar too. This song shows what The Experience could have sounded like if they had a bass player as good as Sancious' bassist Gerald Crosby, who along with drummer Earnest Carter is one of the best rhythm sections in a genre full of great rhythm sections. Sancious plays this song with the expected Hendrixisms, but David turns it up to eleven by adding some nice McLaughlin and Jeff Beck licks too.

Side two is a long jazz fusion suite that features many high powered synth workouts plus a beautiful choir section with Gayle Moran and others on vocals. Unfortunately this album slipped through the cracks at the time of its release, which is a shame because at that time 'Transformation' was exactly what a lot of people were looking for.
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