Summer is shaping up to be a bonanza time of year for new records featuring modern guitarists.
First we have a teaser for a record being released in August. For Terje Rypdal’s birthday, August 23rd, Rune Grammofon is releasing Sky Music: A Tribute to Terje Rypdal featuring – Nels Cline, Hedvig Mollestad, Bill Frisell, Jim O’Rourke, David Torn, Raoul Bjørkenheim, Henry Kaiser, and more. Produced by Henry Kaiser, who does an amazing job on the producing and playing front, this is shaping up to be THE modern guitar record of the year.
The Great Harry Hillman Tilt [Cuneiform]
This Swiss post-jazz quartet, is composed of Nils Fischer, reeds; David Koch, guitar and effects; Samuel Huwyler, bass; and Dominik Mahnig, drums. Koch proves as adept at sounds and noise as notes on this unclassifiable, evocative effort.
Burning Ghosts Reclamation [Tzadik]
Other than the titles, this jazz/metal quartet of Daniel Rosenboom, trumpet; Jake Vossler, guitar; Richard Giddens, bass, and Aaron McLendon, drums portrays their radical politics in the intense originality of their concept. Anger joins inclusiveness (of musical styles) for a vision we can live with.
Arve Henriksen Towards Language [Rune Grammofon]
Henriksen’s ninth album under his own name, is a work of gorgeous, atmospheric meditation, featuring Jan Bang, Erik Honoré, Eivind Aarset and vocalist Anna Maria Friman of Trio Mediæval.
Inaugural Sound Clash (For the 2 Americas) [M.O.D. Technologies]
A special one-time only music encounter features guitarists Raoul Björkenheim, Dominic James, and Mike Sopko join drummer, Hideo Yamaki and bassist Bill Laswell. Recorded at John Zorn’s music space, it is one long track of guitar and drum energy.
Adam Rogers Dice [Adraj Records]
Joined by Fima Ephron, bass and Nate Smith, drums, Rogers eschews his recent smooth Gibson sounds in favor of some funky Strat skronk.
Elliott Sharp, Mary Halvorson, and Marc Ribot ERR Guitar [Intakt]
Sharp spent one day in the studio with Halvorson and another with Ribot. A magnificent modern guitar summit.
Tim Motzer Unseen Universe [1k]
This Philadelphia guitarist’s release was recorded live, with his Takamine acoustic-electric guitar thru a variety of pedals and loopers (no laptop), bows, clips, etc. Solo except for the title track, Motzer manages to avoid the static repetitiveness of many solo efforts to offer a program of varied sounds, moods, and textures.
Kevin Kastning, Mark Wingfield The Line to Three [Greydisc] Wingfield floats his sustained, soaring melodies over Kastning’s 15 and 30-string acoustics, piano and percussion, to create a gorgeous set of live improvised music.
And a reminder that the gorgeous Bill Fisell Thomas Morgan Small Town [ECM] has been released.
Record Picks is a periodic offering from Guitar Moderne: a listing of recordings brought to my attention that I feel are momentous enough to bring to yours. These are not reviews. Feel free to submit recordings, but they must be purchasable worldwide, reflective of modern guitar (again subjective, 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 sent me a recording, feel free to remind me.