Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Krzysztof Fetras Project & Tomasz Krol – Different Guitar (2012)

Krzysztof Fetras - guitar, acoustic guitar BSG

Tomasz Król - electric & acoustic guitar, banjo
Jarek Gaś - drums
Mikołaj Nowicki - double bass

Different Guitar (2012)

Polish guitarist / composer Krzysztof Fetras and his trio, which consists of bassist Mikolaj Nowicki and drummer Jarek Gas, are joined on this album by the young guitarist Tomasz Krol, creating together an unusual double-guitar quartet, which plays quite differently from what listeners usually associate with guitar led Jazz music. The album includes eight tracks and the music is almost entirely original, with the exception of one tune by Ornette Coleman, and was composed by Fetras or co-composed by him and his wife Iwona Fetras, with one tune credited solely to Iwona and another credited to Krol, Fetras and Nowicki. 

Although the guitarists use both electric and acoustic guitars, the sound of the guitars is not that much different from each other, as the session has largely an acoustic ambience. The melodies are stated usually quite overtly at the start of each track, to be followed by extended improvisations by both guitarists, some straightforward and other quite free. The guitarists play mostly together, accompanying each other on their respective solos, with the acoustic and electric guitars blending together harmonically and textually and there is plenty of inspired interplay. Both guitarists offer quite excellent phrasing, playing around the melody lines and sometimes flirting with time, wrapping things up nicely by the end of each tune. The rhythm section provides a solid and mostly delicate background, which is essential for the soloists to be able to soar above it. Their playing is elegant and imaginative, without being obtrusive on one hand and over-ornamental on the other.

It is a relief to find people who treat the guitar differently from what the fashion dictates, i.e. flashy Fusion oriented doodling, which makes little sense and provides no challenge whatsoever. The music you'll find here keeps the listener on his toes at all times, either in order to follow the complex improvisations or the multilayered ambient atmosphere the music evolves into at times. Overall this is an album guitar lovers everywhere should listen to attentively, as it presents a unique and quite unusual guitar playing, which offers a pleasant listening experience without being trivial or simplistic. Warmly recommended!

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