March 7, 2007 – 8:20 am
I’m not much of a fan of jazz guitar records, by and large. Mostly they’re a bit — to use the technical term — noodly. But I tend to like John Scofield. He gets in, plays the note, and shuts up. It’s not minimalist, by any stretch of the imagination, but at least it’s not entirely indulgent.
One of my favourite albums of his — notwithstanding the ones with Medeski, Martin & Wood, which are, by definition, superior — is Quiet.
It features Scofield exclusively on nylon stringed acoustic guitars, and interweaves his own lines with breathy brass from Randy Brecker on trumpet and Wayne Shorter on tenor (not soprano, for a change) sax.
Best of all, unlike so many guitar jazz records, the songs are very structured and very focused.
As catchy as yesterday’s pop melody was (I’ve spent the last two days with it bouncing around in my head), After The Fact is a strong hook that hangs around and haunts. A different kind of catchy, I suppose.
All the jazz books I have put this one in the ‘must buy’ pile.