Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Best Guitar Cds of the Week - Week of 10/18/2011

Jeff Beck - Live at B.B. King's Blues Club: Collectors Edition
   Not only a reissue,but the always dubious "Collectors Edition"...Hmm,thankfully this is great stuff. Already released online back in 2003,this is the first "real" release of a great live performance of the Guitar Shop trio. That album,featuring drummer Terry Bozzio and keyboardist Tony Hymas is a favorite of mine,despite the dated reverb sounds,especially on the drums. Hearing this version of the Jeff Beck Band play together again,minus the '80's production, is a treat. They cover a handful of the Guitar Shop songs (Where Were You, Big Block, Savoy) but the real treasure is hearing Bozzio and Hymas take on fusion era Beck classics like Scatterbrain or the Charles Mingus
standard Goodbye Pork Pie Hat. Beck and the boys seem to feed off the energy of
the crowd in this more intimate setting. Even something as harmonically simple as Freeway Jam takes on new life when played live. Beck is his usual magician of a guitarist,pulling seemingly impossible bends and legato phrasing from his bare hands and a whammy bar. With new Jeff Beck albums a rare and precious thing,this not so new Beck is a joyous occasion for guitar fanatics everywhere.

Lawson Rollins - Elevation
   Fantastic nylon string guitar with musicians from around the globe joining in on a mix of Indian,Middle Eastern and European flavors. Fans of Buckethead in Colma mode will want to pick this up,he guests on two tunes.

Screaming Trees - Last Words: The Final Recordings
  In case you were to young or to old to be paying attention in the 90's,let me let you in on a secret.  In the list of bands tagged with the suspicious "grunge" title, sales and fame didn't have much to do with quality. Want some proof? Check out Screaming Trees. Although this music has been available in "unofficial" form,it's good to see this on Cd. This last gasp finds them with plenty left to say.

Andrew Cyrille and Haitian Fascination - Route De Freres
   Although he is one of my favorite drummers,there's not much in his discography for the guitar fan. His Haitian Fascination band,however,features guitarist Alix Pascal. Wonderful stuff from wonderful musicians.

Evile - Five Serpent's Teeth
   If you read last weeks reviews,you know I enjoyed the new Skeletonwitch,partially because the took old school thrash metal and made it their own. Evile plays it far closer to the 1984 rule book for sure but I enjoy them just the same. What they lack in originality,they make up for in energy and precision.

Chick Willis - Let The Blues Speak For Itself
    With his innuendo filled lyrics and raw blues,you won't be hearing Chick Willis on too many radio stations. If you like your blues without the radio friendly gloss,give him a listen.

Be Bop Deluxe - Futurist Manifesto: Harvest Years 1974-1978
   This Five Cd set manages to pack in all five of the albums Be Bop Deluxe did for the Harvest label and add on an entire disc of rarities,all at a bargain price. If you're a Bill Nelson fan,this is quite a goldmine.

Iced Earth - Dystopia
   Iced Earth fans will understandably grumble at yet another lead singer change,but the music is some of the best and most ambitious they've done in a long time.

Horacee Arnold - Tales of the Exonerated Flea
Horacee Arnold - Tribe
   Two fusion gems that deserve to far more famous. Among the all star musicians,Ralph Towner appears on Tribe and John Abercrombie joins Towner on Tales of the Exonerated Flea.

Mick Fleetwood - Visitor
   This reissue of Fleetwood's 1981 solo album is welcome,not just because of his always stellar drumming,but also thanks to the guitar work from the likes of George Harrison and Peter Green.

No comments: