Joe Beck & John Abercrombie, guitars – Coincidence – Whaling City Sound

by | Feb 14, 2008 | Jazz CD Reviews | 0 comments

Joe Beck & John Abercrombie, guitars – Coincidence – Whaling City Sound WCS 040 ***** [www.whalingcitysound.com]:

This one is a no-brainer for any fan of master jazz guitarists. Both of these top performers have played in the duo format before with other great guitarists and are full of terrific ideas that combine a basis in roots music with a modern slant on the music.

The dozen tracks cover a variety of ballads, uptempo tunes, blues, standards and some originals from both guitarists. These guys really listen closely to one another and you will be moved to listen closely to the musical journey they take together. Their guitar sound is captured perfectly, and the give and take from one to the other makes for a super-exciting listening experience. It’s why I’ve always dug duos of any sort – pianos, saxes, flutes, you name it – at least since stereo came on the scene.

There are four blues standards, with Miles’ All Blues a highlight. They turn the closing Things Ain’t What They Used to Be into an eight-minute major work with plenty of impressive improvisation. Abercrombie has the more pure tone, with Beck making use of interesting distortion from time to time.  Altogether a most satisfying duo session; this one’s going to get a lot of playing in my car.

TrackList: Beautiful Love, Vingt-six, I Should Care, Israel, How Deep Is the Ocean, Mikey Likes It, My Funny Valentine, All Blues, My Romance, The Turnaround, Just a Waltz, Things Ain’t What They Used to Be.

 – John Henry 

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