Julian Lage: guitar; Scott Colley: double bass; Kenny Wollesen: drums
Julian Lage is a dauntless guitarist who explores a multitude of possibilities and genres with the same conviction and straightforward attitude. Last year, he delighted us with the album “Room”, recorded in duo with Nels Cline, another electrifying master guitarist who moves in different ways but whose collaboration sounded incredibly impactful. This year, equipped for the first time with a Fender Telecaster, he oriented a wonderful trio that includes the talented Scott Colley on bass and Kenny Wollesen on drums.
“Fortune Teller” sparks with the guitarist technique and bright sound that works on top of the groovy tapestry weaved by Colley and Wollesen.
Despite of its title, “Persian Rug” takes the shape of a Django’s gypsy jive rather than anything from the Middle East, contrasting in tone and timbre with the easy-on-the-ear folk tune, “Nocturne”, and the little samba, “Supera”, in which Lage continues displaying his refined melodic/harmonic abilities.
While “Activate” is a brief straight-ahead piece that enraptures us with its spells, “Stop Go Start” is delivered as a floating dance swamped in engaging guitar statements, buoyant bass motions, and Wollesen’s outstanding percussion.
Colley comes to the forefront when playing the head’s melody of “Presley”, a mid-tempo waltz that features a thrilling solo by Lage. To confirm his versatility, the guitarist does not only take us to Western landscapes with “Prospero”, which flows at a galloping rhythm, and to the American folk of “Ryland”, but also presents another pervasive standard entitled “I’ll Be Seeing You”.
Fresh, impetuous, and diversified, “Arclight” is a solid fourth album, the first in trio, of a tremendous guitarist who is here to be taken seriously.
01 – Fortune Teller ► 03 – Nocturne ► 05 – Stop Go Start