Saxophonist Steve Cole has made a great impact on the smooth jazz scene with Stay Awhile (1998), Between Us (2000), NY LA (2003), Spin (2005), True (2006),  Moonlight (2011) and Pulse (2013).

Now he returns with a new shining star. Turn It Up is his call. The supporting team hasn't changed very much compared to his previous album. David Mann (sax, flute, keyboards, synth bass, programming), Ricky Peterson (Hammond B3), Nicholas Cole (keyboards, synth bass, programming), Khari Parker (drums), Bernd Schoenhart (guitar) are being strengthened by Lamar Jones (bass), James Lloyd (piano) and Keith Fluitt (vocals).

Turn It Up is produced by David Mann. His specialty are fine horn arrangements giving  every sax album a powerful background. Sidechain starts pumped up that way. Trevor Neumann on trumpet, Dan Levine on trombone and David Mann on sax flavor Cole's performance.

One sax is not enough. Steve Cole gives more gas and builds a chorus out of tenor and alto saxophones to create Turn It Up. In a tight crowd of smooth jazz saxophonists he is a master of soft and gentle sounds like on the mellifluous Reverence. She's the One makes romance to a nice simmer party.

Bright Side is a David Mann strong point. What does that mean? The song comes with a blistering horn arrangement, taking no prisoners and leaving only a little space for James Lloyd's piano solo. Woman's Gotta Have It was released as a single from Bobby Womack's 1972 album Understandin. Cole's rendition is a supreme flashback to good old Motown sound.

If there were Laws Of Attraction leading their compliance to success, who would disregard them? Let us follow instead Steve's  musical guiding rule. Life Is a Groove is wisdom and positive attitude, which is particularly widespread among musicians. The whole is underscored by Cole's musical theme. The term Workhouse is often connected with unpleasant associations. In the present case the exact opposite applies. This song is an audible bang.

The best comes last. Mirage makes a brilliant transition to modern smooth jazz with sonic flow and finesse.

On Turn It Up there is tried and tested, but also pioneering music. Steve Cole has understood that one must not stop, but has to evolve conceptually to remain viable for the future.





Buy the album in all stores

Album Information

Title: Turn It Up
Artist: Steve Cole
Year: 2016
Length: 0:43:03
Genre: General Jazz
Label: Artistry Music


01 Sidechain [4:14]
02 Turn It Up! [3:33]
03 Reverence [5:04]
04 She's the One [4:14]
05 Bright Side [4:15]
06 Woman's Gotta Have It [4:04]
07 Laws of Attraction [4:44]
08 Life Is a Groove [4:24]
09 Workhouse [3:21]
10 Mirage [5:11]

Further reviews