For Van Morrison, first and foremost, it’s always been about the music, and finding that magic place inside the music that takes you someplace else, outside yourself to the nameless realm beyond. What many see as an aloof taciturn stage presence that at times seems more eccentric the older he gets has always been about him shutting everything else out in search of the indefinable mystic.
Born To Sing: No Plan B, his first studio album in four years, finds him occupying familiar territory with jazz influenced soul and R&B, but the emphasis is on jazz grooves and those grooves and what the excellent crew of musicians he’s gathered for these sessions are doing. Reportedly recorded in Belfast (no studio credit is given in the notes), the sound on the record is brilliant, making you feel at times you are right in the room with the musicians. Each instrument is loud and clear, its clarity defined. Nothing is buried in the mix. Listen on headphones and you can swear you can hear the sax players, one of which is Morrison breathing.
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