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Jeffrey Ryan Smoots
Review Date: August

Alright, this is some seriously happening jazz. Imagine a musician with equal facility on bass AND guitar. He plays guitar like Allan Holdsworth and plays bass like Jeff Berlin. Is he human? Is he from this planet?

I believe Al Garcia is in fact human—a very talented human. I’m entranced by his playing. His solos simply exude melody. One never gets the feeling he’s showing off, or playing rote riffs. Instead I find myself listening intently to the melodies he creates, marveling at the joy he communicates through his music.

This could be a theme for Make it So. The compositions communicate a joy, a love of music. The mood they convey is akin to that of Eric Johnson, Allan Holdsworth, and Jeff Berlin. Uplifting. Positive. Good, in the best sense of the word.

I should also mention that this album sounds great. Clean, clear and strong—a great mix. Al is a fine engineer. I would encourage him to lend his recording and engineering talents to others. This man is capable of producing great albums.

The album is of such even high quality that it’s difficult to pick favorites. Tracks 1, ‘Make it So’, and track 7, ‘Harmonic Sketch #1’ stand out for me. ‘Make It So’ is a high energy fusion piece, while Harmonic Sketch #1 is an introspective solo bass exploration There are no stinkers on this album; you get great music from start to finish.

Make It So is one of those rare jazz albums with universal appeal. Al’s playing is absolutely joyous. The positive energy he creates seems boundless. I recommend this album to all music lovers, from the hardcore jazzer to the hardcore rocker. It may sound sappy, but I don’t care: this album will make you feel good.

9.5 out of 10 Keyboards.
Reviewer: Jeffrey Ryan Smoots