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Snarky Puppy | Immigrance

Bassist Michael League and his fusion-jam crew deliver their most mature music.

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Every puppy has to grow up and calm down eventually. Even a Snarky Puppy. So, on their dozenth studio album Immigrance, the Grammy-winning jazz-fusion jam-band collective led by bassist, songwriter and producer Michael League present their most mature disc to date. Instead of worshipping at the altar of extreme technical prowess, flashy soloing and intricacy for its own sake, these eight instrumental cuts are laid-back, groove-based affairs that give the 19 players room to relax, breathe and stretch out — while allowing the flowing arrangements to slowly change and evolve at their own pace. There’s still no shortage of stellar musicianship and melodic complexity, but now songs come first instead of the other way around. That might cost them some of their hardcore following, but it’s hard to accuse League and his Puppy of barking up the wrong tree by broadening their appeal.