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Category Archives: Devin Hoff

El guitarrista Nels Cline nombra a su nuevo trío The Nels Cline Singers a pesar de que no hay cantantes en la banda. Y nombra el álbum, Instrumentals … bueno, porque no hay cantantes en la banda. Estos Singers cuentan con las proteicas habilidades musicales de Devin Hoff en contrabajo, y Scott Amendola en la batería y electrónica. Luego por supuesto, el increíble trabajo de Nels Cline, que ha inspirado a Jazz Times a llamarlo “el guitarrista más peligroso del mundo “.

Reviews:

En voz muy baja – o no tan silencioso, Nels Cline se ha convertido en el príncipe heredero de la guitarra de vanguardia. Su constancia en conciertos, grabaciones y su espíritu inquebrantable le han convertido en el líder de un género que, por su propia naturaleza, está condenado a andar por las afueras del negocio de la música. Ellos se lo pierden. Sobre “Instrumentals”, Cline deambula libremente en el formato guitarra, bajo, batería que le permite hacer lo suyo: extraños loops, disonantes notas fragmentadas, speed metal rave-ups, y una killer-bluesy-excursion en “Lowered Boom”.

–Darrin Fox

Guitar Player Magazine

El guitarrista californiano describe Instrumentals, como “powerjazzrockfreepsychedelicate instrumental music”. Este es un power trío de los viejos tiempos: altamente electrificadas guitarras, bajo, y batería, la banda de ensueño de cada guitar shop. (Los “Singers” no existen. Sólo es una referencia irónica, explica Cline, “a todos los grupos de easy-listening de los años 60.”) En efecto, los cantantes de Nels Cline trazan una línea desde The Jimi Hendrix Experience a Triumph y luego a Bill Frisell y Prime Time.

El rango del trío es ciertamente impresionante. De hecho, los nueve originales son absolutamente diferentes. Más clásico, más brusco, scale-obsessed lines en caída libre en, “A Mug Like Mine”. Sin embargo, Cline ha tomado un gran cuidado con muchas de estas piezas. El tema inicial se transforma en secundario, y los solos se convierten en vigorosas improvisaciones colectivas.

–Greg Buium

Downbeat


Read the Original Here

Guitarist Nels Cline calls his new trio The Nels Cline Singers even though there are no singers in the band. He calls the album, Instrumentals… well, because there are no singers in the band. These Singers feature the protean musical skills of Devin Hoff on contrabass, and Scott Amendola on drums and electronics. Then of course there’s Nels’ amazing guitar work, which has inspired Jazz Times to call him, “The world’s most dangerous guitarist.” For more information go to the Spotlight on the home page. For a taste, go to CryptoRadio by clicking on the buttons to your right..

Reviews

Very quietly – or not so quietly, Nels Cline has become the crown prince of avant-garde guitar. His constant gigging, recording and undying spirit have made him the leader of a genre that, by its very nature, is doomed to ride the outskirts of the music biz. Their loss. On Instrumentals, Cline roams freely in the guitar, bass and drums format that allows him to fully do his thing: freaky looping, dissonant shard of notes, speed metal rave-ups, and a killer bluesy excursion on the tune “Lowered Boom.” Hell, with a list like that, you’re probably asking yourself, “What’s not to like?” My sentiments exactly.

Darrin Fox

Guitar Player Magazine [May, 2002]

This inscrutably titled disk features guitarist Cline’s new power trio, with Devin Hoff on contrabass and Scott Amendola on drums and percussion (as well as loops, live effects and processing). There are no singers, and no vocals. Other guitarists on the scene might trump Cline with a single defining attribute – funkier, flashier, more lyrical, whatever. But I can’t think of anyone right now who covers more musical ground than Cline, or who covers it half as well. You can hear everyone from Jim Hall to Sonny Sharrock here, depending upon the tune or the passage. In fact, Cline showcases so many different moods and styles that the initial effect can be a little disorienting. You have him pegged as one thing, and then he comes at you from a new direction. However, Cline is not just a musical chameleon. He always surrounds himself with strong players, and gives them ample opportunity to display their skills. This trio is fully interactive (no mere time-keepers here), and the two other members maintain a running dialogue with Cline, echoing, reinforcing and commenting on his lines. Hoff, in particular, often figures prominently on bowed bass. The solid group dynamic gives the music a continuity and cohesion beneath all the surface variation. On Instrumentals, Cline himself often favours a thick, somewhat overdriven sound, tending toward dirty or even positively filthy (as on “Lowered Boom,” a truly hardcore electric blues). The opening track, “A Mug like Mine,” teases a simple melody line almost to the point of obsession, in much the same way that John Coltrane played with all the possibilities of a simple riff or phrase in his later work. (On Cline’s remake of Coltrane’s Interstellar Space with drummer Gregg Bendian, he proved himself to be a superb Coltrane interpreter.) Cline also understands the visceral impact of a good strum, and has added some thrash elements to his musical vocabulary. (The relentless “Cause for Concern” sounds like a synthesis of Sonic Youth and the Mahavishnu Orchestra). That having been said, Cline is hardly predictable, and he can certainly play pretty for the people when he has a mind to. “Lucia,” which follows the greasy “Lowered Boom,” is so spare and understated as to be well nigh invisible at first, and has a wistful minimalism very reminiscent of Jim Hall. The CD’s closing number, “Slipped Away,” is reverbed and ruminative, bringing to mind the work of Ry Cooder and Bill Frisell. And while “Ghost of the Piñata,” is uptempo, Cline’s twelve-string chimes and rings with crystalline clarity. Every track on this CD is a winner, and with a recording as fine as this one, Cline is identifying himself as a major force in the world of electric guitar.

Bill Tilland

BBCi [April 17,2002]

Jazz-rock fusion, freely improvised tunes and rock with a hard and fast edge, the Nels Cline Singers traverse sparse, brooding pieces, touching contemplative melodies and overwhelming, almost punk, sonic bombardments with Instrumentals. Instrumentals is just that, with Devin Hoff on upright bass, Scott Amendola on percussion and some very artfully put together loops and effects, not to mention Nels Cline’s inspired yet precise guitar playing. Though there are only three members in this band, the Singers sound like a much larger ensemble. A songs like “Harbor Child” is a solitary stroll along a waterfront early in the morning, while “Cause for Concern” is a heart pounding run from a powder keg of trouble. Better still, the raunchy “Lowered Boom,” with its swaggering rhythms and hormone-driven guitar work, is a musical trip to a New Orleans bordello with a pocket full of jack. The Nels Cline singers are solid musicians and Instrumentals displays a spectrum of directions radiated from a prism of talent tempered with flair.

I. Khider

Exclaim (Canada) [May, 2002]

If Instrumentals, The Nels Cline Singers’ debut, starts with a nasty bite, by the end, it’s all country grace and good manners. Cline wouldn’t have it any other way. The California guitarist calls Instrumentals “powerjazzrockfreepsychedelicate instrumental music.” Or we could just call it a throwback. This is an old-time power trio: highly electrified guitar, bass and drums, every guitar shop’s dream band. (The “Singers” don’t exist. It’s just a “wry reference,” Cline explains, “to all those easy-listening groups from the 60’s.”) Indeed, The Nels Cline Singers draw a line from The Jimi Hendrix Experience to Triumph and then on to Bill Frisell and Prime Time. The trio’s range is certainly impressive. Indeed, the nine originals are absolutely distinct. They include the classic, gruff, scale-obsessed lines in free fall (“A Mug Like Mine”) – think Tony Williams’ Lifetime. But Cline’s taken a great deal of care with many of these pieces. Initial themes morph into secondary themes, and solos are transformed into vigorous collective improvisations. And Cline makes use of the more attractive characteristics common to guitar-centric writing: from the images drawn by driving, muted chords to passages of lush, floating arpeggios. Pair this with an unusually sophisticated dynamic reach –often not a guitar trio’s strong suit – and a real drama develops. Ironically, the disc’s fundamental fault lies in its abundance. In a set that runs nearly 80 minutes, we’re wasted by the end. Disciplined editing would have brought greater power to the material. The other Singers, bassist Devin Hoff and drummer Scott Amendola, are a compact and loose combination. Hoff’s acoustic bass is a wonderful surprise: Filled with warmth (and regularly bowed), it’s an inspired and deft touch. Amendola is also a skillful tactician, cueing a clamor with cymbals or flattening his cohorts with a backbeat.

Greg Buium

Downbeat *** 1/2 [June, 2002]

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