Catching up on a plethora of performances released last year, some of which are shoo-ins for my “best of” list coming later in January.
The Markus Reuter Interview
Happy New Year. My interview with Markus Reuter is long overdue. He has been a major part of the modern guitar community for decades, from his brilliant work with The Stickmen and versions of King Crimson, to his recordings ranging from ambient to prog, to his terrific podcast featuring a number of modern guitarists. He has worked with Tim Motzer, Adrian Belew, Robert Fripp and Mark Wingfield among others. Our conversation ranges wide and long, covering many things of interest to the modern guitarist.
The Second Jonathan Crossley Interview
I interviewed Jonathan Crossley a year ago and described him as the poster boy for modern guitar, due to his experimentation with haptic control. He is now focusing on laptop software to create aleatoric loops with which he and his trio can improvise. I highly recommend his new record, Inhale and that you go back and watch the first interview here, along with the performance videos, either before or after. If you are interested in the possibilities of modern guitar you must check him out.
Cool Pedal Alert: Eventide H90
Eventide’s H9 became one of those instant modern pedal classics like the Line 6 DL4 and the EHX POG. As it basically allowed only one effect at a time, it was not uncommon to see the boards of professionals and more well off amateurs sporting two. This week Eventide revealed the H90, the equivalent of two fully loaded H9s in one box for a bit less money. But the H90 is not only twin H9s; it has some tricks of its own, with new algorithms (notably polyphonic pitch shifting) and routing options. It apparently was an epic undertaking to put together such a complex product during Covid, but that just adds to the Eventide legend.
Cool Pedal Alert: Boss SL-2 Slicer
The original Boss Slicer, the SL-20, was one of those pedals that was ahead of its time. Not enough guitarists were into the sequencer style sounds that it was capable of producing. Or, not into it enough to sacrifice the pedalboard space it required. With the release of the SL-2 compact version of the effect, Boss is betting that the increase of forward thinking guitarists, combined with the new compact size, will entice more people to slice.