Sunday, January 18, 2015

CD Review – Life Under Stars, by Carl Weingarten

This is simply one of the best guitar-led jazz/new age fusion albums ever recorded and released.

Carl Weingarten uses electric, acoustic, and slide guitars, dobro, and keyboards to weave a rich musical mosaic whose intricate threads also include bass (Michael Manring, Billie Duffey), keyboards (Kit Walker, Troy Arnett), flute (Barbara Else), trumpet and flugelhorn (Jeff Oster), electric and acoustic guitars (Pat Duffey), pedal steel (Robert M. Powell), drums and percussion (Celso Alberti, Brian Knave), and vocals (Lucy Allen, Tate Bissinger).

Weingarten traverses the sonic range of his instruments, yielding a masterwork in which the sounds are just as important as the music, without sacrificing the latter. The irresistibly catchy tunes are instantly memorable, such that they continue to resonate even after just one listen.

In terms of both guitar artistry and overall band musicianship, this album puts Carl Weingarten right up there with Andy Summers and Paul Speer.

--Raj Manoharan

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