Thursday, April 26, 2007

In The Clubs!

Last night I had the honor to witness one of the all-time geniuses of the guitar, Nels Cline, in action at Yoshi’s in Oakland, CA. Performing in a trio setting with Devin Hoff (whose interplay on bass with Cline on several pieces was nothing short of amazing!) and Scott Amendola (percussion and some very tasteful electronic treatments) as the “Nels Cline Singers” (of course, there were no vocals), Cline was masterful throughout two mind-blowing sets. A wide range of material was covered: straightforward, yet modern, Jazz guitar interpretations of compositions by the late, great Andrew Hill; somewhat minimal, yet spacious, free jazz experimentations; precise and beautiful post-rock stylings; and incendiary outre rock extravaganzas, often punctuated by blasts of extreme experimental electronics. In summary - two great sets which displayed three amazing improvisors using all of their collective powers to create an assortment of challenging and genre-blurring sounds. A sonic Tour de Force!

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