Paul Taylor - Ladies' Choice

In extending this month's CD reviews, staying focused on the talent from the desert seemed only natural to focus on another Las Vegas based musician.

Paul Taylor's sound has become very identifiable in smooth jazz. Within the first few minutes of listening to Ladies' Choice, it is evident whose voice is behind the alto saxophone. His signature sound on both alto and soprano saxophones has been one of the tools that has helped keep his career on an even course.
In Ladies' Choice, the artist has utilized the talents of two credible producers, Rex Rideout, and Barry Eastmond. Eastmond works his magic on the vocal tracks, "How Did You Know", and "Open Your Eyes", both co-written and sung by guest Regina Belle. Eastmond has a prior history working with Anita Baker, and facilitates a similar approach with Belle.
Belle stands out beyond the other guest vocalists. who include LaToya London, Terry Dexter, and Lauren Evans. Although all are fine vocalists, there is nothing that stands out about the latter three's performances, or even the song choices.
What really shines on this album are the uptempo renditions of the tracks, "Ladies' Choice", "Overdrive", and "Point Of View", all featuring alto sax. "Streamline" is also a nice track with the soprano saxophone as the featured lead.
Taylor has obviously switched direction this time around, and this project reflects that in a positive way. This more aggressive approach and diversity is a welcome change.