Hristo Vitchev Quartet magical mysterious guitar quartet jazz Hristo Vitchev Quartet – OF LIGHT AND SHADOWS: I am always in “anticipation” mode when Hristo tells me that he has another album coming out, and this latest release is (well) over an hour, so his magical and mysterious guitar-led quartet gives you exactly what you want! Hristo’s high-energy (& high-talent) jazz guitar work is joined by pianist Jasnam Daya Singh (Weber Iago), bassist Dan Robbins, and Mike Shannon doing drums, and they are pure precision on tunes like the wonderful “Pentachromatic Butterflies” (the samples aren’t up yet, as the official release isn’t until January 18th, 2017; I’ll come back and add them in as soon as I’ve been notified they are up)… at a length of 11:36, this provides space aplenty for each player to show off their significant skills – and the thing about this quartet is that they always compliment each other’s skills… truly one of the best jazz compositions you’ll hear in 2018… total JOY!
Comparisons to other jazz guitarists may be made by the reviewers, but what makes Hristo’s work so notable for me is his use of the “spaces” in between lines… as you listen to the high-energy projected on the closer, “Partial Darkness”, you’ll hear what I mean… the lead-in by Jasnam’s piano is electrifying, and when the bass & drums join in, it forms the undercurrent for a totally exciting tune… as the 12:02 piece continues, the quartet executes some of the trickiest changes I’ve ever heard… an absolutely award-worthy jazz tune… you’re gonna’ LOVE this piece, just like I did!
As sometimes happens, it was the title track, “Of Light and Shadows”, that made the strongest impression on me, and easily won my vote for personal favorite of the nine (long) tracks offered up for your jazz listening pleasure… the sensitivity displayed by each player to the others, and the excellent rhythmic shifts incorporated throughout the 8:24 composition will make it a “constant” on your playlists… just beautiful!
I give Hristo and his players a MOST HIGHLY RECOMMENDED, with an “EQ” (energy quotient) rating of 4.99 for this most desirable musical adventure. Get more information about Hristo and his various musical projects on the Hristo Vitchev website. Rotcod Zzaj
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