Sunday, September 9, 2012

CD Review – Los Angeles Blues, by Ciro Hurtado

Equipped with only a single acoustic guitar, acclaimed veteran six-stringer Ciro Hurtado unleashes a full, rich plethora of sound that fuses global styles as diverse as the Americas, the British Isles, and continental Europe.

Hurtado combines the Andes mountain music of his Peruvian homeland with the trappings of Spanish flamenco, American folk music, and the snappy jazz of his adopted hometown of Los Angeles. The influences of Celtic music and childhood rock ‘n’ roll favorites such as The Beatles and Led Zeppelin can also be heard in his vibrant compositions.

This blend of the exotic and the familiar makes the album instantly accessible and enjoyable. Listeners can revel in musical motifs that they recognize while broadening their musical horizons thanks to Hurtado’s international flavorings.

Hurtado’s playing is just as inspired and invigorating as his writing. Using just one acoustic guitar on the entire recording, Hurtado employs his all-encompassing finger-style approach to create a full spectrum of chords, melodies, and rhythms on each track.

Hurtado has produced a solo guitar album that is easily one of the best in the genre, one that can be enjoyed over and over from beginning to end.

--Raj Manoharan

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