CD Review: Michael Manson "Thumpin': The Live Album"

Talk about a double shot of baddass bass.
By Chris Jisi ,

Talk about a double shot of baddass bass. Michael Manson, best known for his muscular grooves with the late George Duke, moves front and center on this livein- Chicago double-CD, and hires gospel great Maurice Fitzgerald to back him. With presence, phrasing, and flair to match any smooth jazz bassist out there, Manson handles all the melodies, while delivering dramatic solos that build from bluesy bursts to full-on shredding. Surrounded by full rhythm and horn sections as well as backing vocalists, Manson especially shines on “Groove With You,” a cover of Luther Vandross’s “There’s Nothing Better Than Love,” and the opener, “Coming Right at You.” Fitzgerald is rooted and relentless all night, and his driving support work on “Just One Touch” is a watermark in an evening of bass highpoints.