Release Date:
June 27, 2008

Reviewed by:
Anne Aufderheide

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I don’t know how to put this any other way, but listening to Eric Darius’ new record makes me want to shout “LET’S PARTY!” Put on the CD Going All Out, get up out of that chair, and get your groove on!  This high energy album is extremely likeable.  On ten strong tracks, Darius delivers extremely adept performances, reminiscent of the feel of his high octane live shows.  There’s a seasoned skill to his playing on this record.  He must be working hard to attain this level of professionalism so early in his career.

Of the new record, Darius says, “I am really excited about trying different things on this album, and hope that everyone will enjoy listening to it as much as I enjoyed recording it.”  He’s incorporated an refreshing yet aggressive blend of jazz, R&B, hip hop, blues, and pop.  Darius shares, “We gave these songs the grooves and feel of what is heard on the radio today, sweet hooks and melodies on top of really cool drum beats.” 

Teaming with another young lion of this genre, Darren Rahn produced six tracks on the CD and co-wrote three of the tunes.  One extremely talented young man, everything Rahn touches, turns to gold. Let’s see if he still has his Midas touch.

First track “Just Like That” steps out, it’s through the roof!  This track gets the party started with intense saxophone, organ, and hip beats.  Track two, “Because of You”, is an instrumental cover of Ne-Yo’s big hit.  Darius plays with the breathing of a singer, to the point it feels like he is singing the song but with his sax. Very skillfully done!

“Just For The Moment,” has a very attractive melody and an easy going groove, so gorgeously played by Darius.  There’s also some upbeat, stand-out guitar work from the amazing Norman Brown. The title track “Goin’ All Out” is signature Darius.  This guy can blow! There’s some very cool horn section work on this track that compliments Darius’ intensity.  This is one of the first tracks written for the album. Darius and Rahn collaborated on the writing.

On this instrumental version of a Mary J. Blige song, “Be Without You,” Darius plays this romantic, plaintive melody with aching beauty.  “Vibe With Me” is distinctive and intriguing.  It’s hip hop elements comingle so interestingly with Darius’ intense soulful sax, conjuring an urban vibe and jazz hybrid sound.

For all you lovers of Latin Jazz, in “Feeling’ Da Rhythm,” Darius shows off his roots with this hot Reggaetón tune. Originating in Panama, Reggaetón blends Jamaican music influences of reggae and dancehall with those of Latin America, such as bomba, plena, salsa, merengue, latin pop and bachata as well as that of hip hop, R&B, and electronica. This original tune by Darius adroitly captures the feel – it literally sizzles as Darius plays like he has caught on fire!  Get your dancing shoes on and find a partner to take a spin on the dance floor.

The soulful “Ain’t No Doubt About It” is driven by a strong bass line and a delectable groove.  Darius plays like there’s no tomorrow.  The playful “Unconditional” has a whimsical lilt to it yet the underlying double up beats show off Darius’ youthful hybrid style of jazz.

“Breathe” has to be my favorite track on the album because it is, quite simply, so beautiful.  Delicately and sweetly played by Darius, this track has heart and grace!  Up until this track, the album has so much funk and danceable energy, I found myself waiting to exhale.  Well, here’s your chance to let out a deep, satifying breath. Ahhhhhhhh!

Eric Darius has gone all out to give us his very best. Mission accomplished, Mr. Darius! This music is so superbly written and performed; it quite literally pulsates with the energy and soul he’s poured into it!  I, for one, say “Thank you, Eric Darius!  You’ve outdone yourself!”