Down Beat - 9/00, p.603.5 stars out of 5
- "...A guitar dream date....Bruno's 7-string axe is in the spotlight...with Beck's alto guitar providing the rhythmic and textural backgrounds....They clearly are getting along famously..."
Personnel: Jimmy Bruno (guitar); Joe Beck (alto guitar).
Recorded at Avatar Recording Studios, New York, New York on December 15 & 16, 1999. Includes liner notes by Todd Barkan.
Personnel: Jimmy Bruno (guitar); Joe Beck (guitar, electric guitar).
Liner Note Author: Todd Barkan.
Recording information: Avatar Recording Studios; NYC (12/15/1999-12/16/1999).
Photographer: Jimmy Katz.
These two guitarists, seemingly dissimilar in style, are in lockstep throughout this recording. Bruno plays most of the lead lines, with Beck comping behind him on the alto guitar he invented. Long one of the best-kept secrets in jazz, Beck had a couple of minor hits (his album with David Sanborn on CTI in the '70s comes to mind), as well as performing and recordings with the likes of Gil Evans, Duke Ellington, Paul Simon, Buddy Rich, and Frank Sinatra, among many others. In fact, it was Rich's decision to use Beck instead of Bruno at a session that led to the latter's leaving Rich's band. But any animosity that might have existed is long forgotten, and these two make exquisite music together. The set consists of standards such as "Lazy Afternoon," "Eleanor Rigby," "Tenderly" (featuring Beck on solo guitar), "Cherokee" and the like, along with one original by each of the guitarists. At first, you might think that you would miss the rhythm section, but from the first notes, that is not an issue. For those who want to hear the tradition of electric jazz guitar, as well as its future, this is the place to go. ~ Ross Boissoneau