Reviews

‘Rocking': Boston Globe

Took an enthusiastic audience back to a time when dazzling musicianship could still land an instrumental group on the pop charts. The band’s rocking encore, showed why [Stanley Clarke] ranked with Jaco Pastorius as a god of the electric bass. Corea, meanwhile, demonstrated why Clarke calls him maestro.” — Boston Globe

‘Majestic': Buffalo Spree

Living up to all the accolades I had heard, the fourth installment of RTF was majestic. Stanley Clark’s wild bass maneuvering stole the show by the end, but Chick Corea’s keyboards held it all together, while Lenny White’s incomparable drumming kept pushing forward.” — Buffalo Spree

‘Mind-melting': Buffalo News

RTF simply slayed us all with a lengthy set drawing from the earliest days and including material from the most recent effort, “Forever.” The expansive “Medieval Overture,” a playful but powerful “Senor Mouse,” and a mind-melting blend of funk, jazz and prog in the form of “After the Cosmic Rain” … the highlight of the concert season.” — Buffalo News

‘Virtuosity': Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

For a band that hadn’t been to Pittsburgh in nearly 40 years and hadn’t played together for more than 30 before reforming in 2008, Return to Forever sure didn’t miss a beat. RTF delivered the virtuosity that it first became known for in the 1970s.” — Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

‘Jaw-Dropping': Mosman Daily

Corea’s swirling arpeggios on the electronically-tweaked Steinway made way for a beautiful violin solo which shows why Ponty is considered to be only matched by Stephane Grappelli on that instrument. Clarke bowed his upright bass – his first set had been all-electric and featured a rapid-fire, flamenco-like frenzy on Sorceress – and Gambale kicked in with a gorgeous extended solo on acoustic guitar.” — Mosman Daily

‘Superb': Sydney Morning Herald

Each melodic idea acted as a spring for the next . . . Gambale, on acoustic guitar, generated rhythmic force. Corea’s brilliance as a composer was there, too, as the magic of ‘Spain’ filled the room, with Ponty exquisitely rendering the melody.” — The Sydney Morning Herald

‘RTF IV Is the Real Thing': All About Jazz

All five musicians in RTF IV possess famously world-class chops. RTF IV is the real thing, organically grown, not another all-star grouping which looks good on paper but which, like an All Star team full of big name players, has the marquee value needed to sell tickets but no real life in it.” — All About Jazz

‘Virtuoso Skills Met Up With Soulful Songs': Undercover

They came together and managed to balance on that blurry line where virtuoso skills meets up with soulful tunes.” — Undercover

‘A Rich Sound Palette': The West Australian

It’s a no-brainer to say all five musicians are virtuosos, a fact laid bare in the finale, ‘Spain.’ Corea’s lilting intro stated the theme from ‘Concierto de Aranjuez,’ thrown to a big-throated violin and back to richly textured piano to full band, finally drawing some of the night’s best solos from Gambale, Clarke and White – a rare spotlight on a constant rhythmic presence.” — The West Australian

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