The City opens up in with the funky and sensuous "Cosmic Monkey" featuring Jeffrey Osbourne's slinky overdubbed harmonies. "Hello Again" is Wes Montgomery-breezy soul samba. Next up is "Side Steppin'"s high-spirited blast of '80s-era disco jazz. "The City"'s dreamy blend of Boney James' soulful tenor saxophone, shivery keyboards, boogaloo congas, bluesy guitar and cognac-smooth jazz vocal follows.
"Las Vegas" is an exuberant congress of dancing guitar licks, Michael Paulo's throaty sax and a bouncing hip-hop swing beat. "Old Friends" is a quiet fire ballad caressed by Brown and James' tender interplay. "Winelight"'s blend of Brown's Grover Washington, Jr.-channeling solos and tasty club beats is complemented by the silky-smooth party starter "Jumpin' Uptown." "Food For the Moon"'s cool 'n funky hip-hop jazz groove flows into a faithful/playful voice box-juiced version of Johnny "Guitar" Watson's "Reel Mutha For Ya." Fittingly, the album closes with the sublime Brown/James chillout duet "The City (Instrumental)."
The City proves beyond a doubt that Paul Brown is one of the most exciting and important guitarists in contemporary jazz.