Sunday, November 20, 2016

Steve Gunn - Time Off

Steve Gunn released Time Off in 2013, and as far as I know it's the first album where he added his voice to his considerable guitar skills. It consists of six lengthy, intricate guitar based songs. Opener Water Wheel sets the tone, taking its time across complex guitar patterns, evoking classic 70s bluesy folk like John Martyn. Complex, but in a very mellow way. Guitars are mostly acoustic, when electric is employed it's done sparingly. Songs like Lurker have a kind of lurching groove to them. New Decline is an almost bottle neck style blues not heard so often in recent years, while Old Strange has some particularly fetching moody guitar parts, the type that sound almost effortless yet highly impressive. Trailways Ramble foregoes vocals in favour of duelling guitars.

It sounds 'classic' yet feels fresh. Although it's definitely one for the musos this is guitar music of the highest quality.