US organ trio team up with star guests for their first album since leaving Blue Note...
Peter Marsh 2005
Soulive are organ trio revivalists with a flair for sparky soloing and deeply funky retrogrooves; once signed to Blue Note, they've collaborated with the likes of John Scofield, Fred Wesley and Jurassic 5.
For Break Out they've added a heap of guests including vocalists Chaka Khan, Ivan Neville and pedal steeler Robert Randolph. Unfortunately their contributions subtract from rather than enhance the proceedings, reducing the trio (and their horn section) to the status of a backing band. Boo.
Having said that, there's probably something here for everyone - from gutsy funk to latino grooves and deep soulmoves. Though the best moments come when the trio are left alone to strech out, Neal Evans' deeply funky, intelligent keyboard bass lines are guaranteed to get the backbone twitching whatever else is going on. Entertaining, unpretentious stuff.