Bassist Orlando LeFleming’s new project, Romantic Funk, is described as falling “somewhere between the serene, legato passages of early-Jaco-era Weather Report, and the spaced out electronica of late-70’s Herbie Hancock”. That’s a high bar. If the first track available to stream from the project (“Pretentious Brooklyn”) is an indicator, though, Romantic Funk should happily sit next to those fusion high-water marks.
Romantic Funk finds LeFleming on bass along with musicians including Seamus Blake (sax), Ari Hoenig (drums), Frank LoCrasto (keyboards), Greg Tuohey (guitar), Sullivan Fortner (keyboards), Pete Rende (keyboards), Lenny Reece (drums), Will Vinson (sax), Ryan Scott (guitar), and Jake Sherman (keyboards). Mixing and mastering by Pete Rende and Nate Wood should give you further comfort that this will sound great and indeed it does. “Pretentious Brooklyn” has the band vamping over heavy grooves that could have come from, say, 1978 and moving through multiple different movements. Check out the stream and pick it up and the band’s Bandcamp site. The full album releases this Friday, May 12.