Album Review of
CaliFOURnia Quartet

Written by Joe Ross
June 13, 2019 - 2:19pm EDT
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That’s not a misspelling of “California,” but rather an intentional, catchy moniker by guitarist Doug MacDonald to acknowledge his quartet that also includes Kim Richmond (sax, flute), Harvey Newmark (bass) and Paul Kreibich (drums). On their appealing debut album, each shares MacDonald’s careful balance of virtuosity and expressive musicality. Based around Los Angeles, this exceptional group gives us four covers and six MacDonald originals. The eclectic and tastefully rendered selections are presented in a leisurely manner with plenty of emotion, yet the band also imparts plenty of swinging bounce and pizazz. Standards like “Tenderly,” “A Beautiful Friendship” and “If You Could See Me Now” are given fresh arrangements, and MacDonald’s solo presentation of “The Things We Did Last Summer” is calming and sweetly memorable. MacDonald originals like “E Spot,” “I Want It” and “Malapropisms” fully demonstrate his eclectic stylistic approach and vision. His Latin bossa, “Girasol” keeps the energy high. The Califournia Quartet’s well-executed music has passionate beauty that strikes gold.  (Joe Ross, Roots Music Report)