Academic journal article Notes

Invocation

Academic journal article Notes

Invocation

Article excerpt

Paul Bollenback. Invocation. Elefant Dreams ED 4550, 2007.

Guitarist Paul Bollenback has been a first-call session player for years, working as a sideman for such eminent leaders as Joey DeFrancesco, Jeff "Tain" Watts, and Gary Bartz. His solo albums have garnered critical acclaim but not as much popular success as they deserve. This may be because of an approach that can be rather introspective, and occasionally a bit on the arty side. But he is never inaccessible, and even in his more self-indulgent moments there is plenty to reward those who take the trouble to listen carefully. This, his seventh album as a leader, is a case in point: On his own composition "Dancing Leaf," Bollenback redeems a rather arch, harmonically dry theme with a guitar solo filled with sweetly melodic passages and subtly bluesy, Pat Metheny-esque sequences. His two-part "Invocation" uses Chris McNulty's voice like a horn, to state the melody in unison with trumpeter Randy Brecker and counterpoint to the guitar, and it works very nicely (though the unfocused first part could have been left off without doing musical damage to the overall piece). …

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