The Dangling Success has done something on City Life that most other smooth jazz combos haven’t even attempted.  That is, they have incorporated linear compositional methods onto their new album’s playlist. Usually contemporary jazz artists eschew compositional and improvisational methods utilized by modern musicians and the traditional jazz genre.  The uncommon cross-genre spirit is what makes City Life most remarkable. The title track and “Catch the Groove” are the two compositions which are most explicit about integrating modern music’s liner approach into smooth jazz.  The entire album could be described as smooth jazz that borders on the modern.  At the end of the day, however, it’s the contemporary side of the divide which The Dangling Success riff on, with their George Benson-like guitar improvisations on “Europa” and other gems.

-Dustin Garlitz