Down Beat - 11/01, pp.57-84 stars out of 5
- "...Hall's lines here prove just how expertly he configures rhythms....Each track is intricate...marked by the kind of clarity and sophistication that have become his trademarks..."
JazzTimes - 12/01, pp.135-6
"...Fascinating and unique...a real treat for anyone who appreciates fine, creative music."
Mojo (Publisher) - 12/01, p.113
"...All twisted abstractions and electronic processing..."
Personnel: Jim Hall (acoustic & electric guitars); Dave Holland, Christian McBride, George Mraz, Scott Colley, Charlie Haden (bass).
Recorded at Avatar Studios, New York, New York on January 7 & 8, 2001. Includes liner notes by Bob Blumenthal.
Personnel: Jim Hall (acoustic guitar, electric guitar).
Liner Note Author: Bob Blumenthal.
Recording information: Studio C, Avatar Studios, New York, NY (01/07/2001/01/08/2001).
Jim Hall is no stranger to guitar/bass duets after several memorable outings with the likes of Ron Carter and Red Mitchell, but this series of studio sessions is even more challenging, mixing it up in pairings with Dave Holland, Christian McBride, Charlie Haden, George Mraz, and Scott Colley. Only three of the 13 pieces are standards, including a soft and sparse treatment of "All the Things You Are" with Mraz, a whisper-soft and slowly savored "Don't Explain" with Haden, and a switch to acoustic guitar for a tense "Besame Mucho" with Colley. Hall's skills as a composer are vastly underrated by the jazz audience as a whole, but his fellow players recognize his formidable skills. He makes a relatively rare appearance on a 12-string acoustic guitar in his challenging opener, "End the Beguine," in which he and Holland rise to the demands of this captivating piece. McBride joins the leader for the playful waltz "Dog Walk," while Colley, Hall's regular bassist at the time of these recording sessions, joins him for the invigorating "Dream Steps," a reworking of the chords to the standard "You Stepped Out of a Dream." In addition to several memorable duo (or trio) improvisations, Hall is joined by both Colley and Mraz for the initially loping and suddenly very abstract "Tango Loco," featuring Mraz's tasty arco bass. Hall's adventuresome streak as a composer, arranger, and performer continues to flourish. ~ Ken Dryden