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An Underrated Artist
M. L. Mitchell | Southern California | 06/28/2007
(5 out of 5 stars)
"If you know little about Gino Vannelli, aside from the fact that he had two major hits, "Living Inside Myself" and "I Just Wanna Stop", you have missed out on an exceptional artist. While Vannelli had some other minor hits he was never the sensation he deserved to be. He not only had an incredible vocal ability, he also wrote his material and could play many instruments. "Nightwalker" should have been the album that sent him to the top as it was perfect for 1981 when jazz/fussion was being experimented with to some degree by a number of popular bands. Vannelli had been perfecting this sound for nearly a decade by then. This album is a great blend of ballads and jazz infused pop/rock. The music is rich and lush with many layers and prominent drums. The songs are brilliantly crafted and sound as if they could have been released to adult contemporary radio yesterday, rather than twenty-six years ago. A true music lover will notice that this album requires more than one listen to pick up on the layering and difficult time changes. While alot of adult contemporary music has been fairly predictable, not so with this album. The orchestration is spectacular, due in part to the drums being more out front than in alot of music of this genre. The title track is a fine example of this. "Nightwalker" has a great intro and prominent guitar sounds often missing on adult radio. The song twists and turns but never bores, and Vannelli's vocals really pull you in. "Seek and You Will Find" continues the tradition with complex time changes, pounding drums and more great guitar work as well. While the hit from this collection, "Living Inside Myself" is nothing short of musical brilliance, "Put the Weight On My Shoulders" is a real standout track in the same vein that should have been a huge hit. "Santa Rosa" shows Vannelli at some of his best jazz/rock fusion with the song sounding like something early Level 42 might have conjured up. While this is more adult contemporary music this particular album rocked more often than not. Other artists like George Benson and the aforementioned Level 42 were starting to bring jazz infused pop to different levels about the time this album came out. However, Vannelli's sound was unique and this album was his crowning achievement."
The Transition Of Gino Vannelli
Andre S. Grindle | Brewer Maine | 04/02/2008
(4 out of 5 stars)
"A few years after Brother to Brother and the previous period of creativity for Gino Vannelli he emmerges in 1981 with 'Nightwalker' and has made the complete transition to a contemporary "soft rocker".That does not mean the elements that made his music so special in the previous decade have dissappeared but the ARP has completely dissappeared and this isn't as R&B inflected as his previous albums;leaning if anything towards jazzy pop/rock with some funky twists-the best example of this on the uptemoi end is "Stay With Me".This also contains "Living Inside Myself",the follow up to his big 1979 hit "I Just Wanna Stop" and it does sound very similar.Filled with soft,lulling jazzy pop such as the title song "Seek And You Shall Find" and "I Believe" those interested in Vannelli's particular artistic elan will not find what they are looking for here;there are other albums of his to hear before this one. But this is certainly not a bad album if you are in the mood for this kind of music."