Two modern guitar giants (Lage and Frisell) together on record; another release from Ramble Records, a label that is fast becoming the go-to for brilliant modern guitar; a song based record with some new and gorgeous guitar sounds; and more. Fall is shaping up to be a listening bonanza.
Julian Lage View With A Room [Blue Note]
Lage’s latest features Bill Frisell on a number of tunes. Anyone who has seen their duets on YouTube knows it is a perfect pairing.
Dai Fujikura and Jan Bang The Bow Maker [Punkt Editions]
The Punkt core group of trumpeter Arve Henriksen, guitar and electronics wizard Eivind Aarset, and sampling king Bang join Japanese synthesizer player Dai Fujikura for the kind of ambient magic we have come to expect from this Norwegian collective’s collaborations.
Dagger Moth The Sun is a Violent Place [Bandcamp]
Sara Ardizonni a/k/a Dagger Moth has released an ambitious Covid project of songs she recorded almost entirely on her own. Layered modern guitar textures compliment the ambivalence and anxiety of the lyrics and Ardizonni’s impassioned vocals.
Julien Tassin primitiv (Rambler Records]
Belgian guitarist Tassin dodges the common pitfalls of “primitive” guitar (open tuning noodling, tunelessness) by turning in a fantastic set of melodies, often based in the emotion of the blues, played with the essentials of tone, taste, technique, and time. Rooted modern guitar of the highest order.
Eric Arn/Eyal Maoz Kost Nix [Feeding Tube Records]
Vienna-residing American guitarist Arn, and Israeli-American guitarist Maoz combine for a live, improvised set that slips seamlessly from noise to notes and back.
No Base Trio NBTII [Setola di Maiale]
For their second outing Puerto Rico-based No Base Trio (alto saxophonist Jonathan Suazo, guitarist Gabriel Vicéns, and drummer Leonardo Osuna) continue their singular brand of spacious, rhythmic, sonic, and melodic interaction.
Andreas Willers Search and Rescue [JHM]
Willers plays pretty much everything on this outing, including but not limited to, guitars (acoustic and electric), bass, banjo, and drums. He has still managed to make it sound like a band creating orchestrated improvisation in real time. Impressive.
Elliott Sharp and Eric Mingus Songs from a Rogue State [Zoar Records]
People often wonder what Hendrix might have sounded like today had he lived. It could well have been something like the combination of Sharp’s blues informed, avant guitar approach coupled with Mingus’ Jimi-like half-spoken singing. Though each has a style all their own, the combo cannot help but recall the adventurous songs of the Sixties icon.
e’fessioux Glow I and Glow II [Bandcamp]
Ian Smit on guitar, effects, and loops joins Steve Foreman (bass, effects), Clive Smith (modular synth, keys, guitar, computer, effects) and Bill Weisbach (drums, percussion, gongs, metals, sound design) for two records of improvisations that have all the form, dynamic, and cohesiveness of compositions; all the more impressive from a quartet employing such a wide range of sounds. The music draws you in, never descending into noise or aimless jamming.
Record Picks is a periodic offering from Guitar Moderne: a listing of recordings brought to my attention that I feel are worthy of being brought to yours. Feel free to submit recordings, but they must be purchasable worldwide, reflective of modern guitar (subjective to be sure, but no blues, classic rock, be-bop, country, etc.) and on a par with the ones above to rate a mention. Many of these are available from DMG in NYC. If you have already sent me a recording, please feel free to remind me.