Composer/trumpeter/arranger Branker doesn't actually appear on [Dance Music
] but his compositions do and they provide effective showcases for the talents of his band. In this instance, his talent for choosing top quality sidemen equals or surpasses his talent for composition. That's not to knock his writing which is solid and well-crafted in a Modern Mainstream mode (as all the CDs reviewed in this grouping are). As good as the tunes are though, I wasn't particularly knocked out nor did I hear anything particularly original therein, but it's good, serviceable stuff in the main. I was at least as impressed by the musicians' performance as by the tunes themselves, particularly the two sax players, Fuller and Bowen, who consistently contribute excellent solos throughout that occasionally reach flammable levels of incandescence. Drummer Cruz' performance is also certainly worthy of note. However, singling out these guys is perhaps a little unfair, given that every musician present does an exemplary job with these tunes. I quite enjoyed it. Recommended.