How we rate: our writers tend to review music they like within their preferred genres.
Guitarist Askold Buk writes music to enjoy, music with a back beat, music that combines obvious references to country & western, pop/rock and smooth jazz.
With a clear, forceful guitar sound and crisp articulation, Buk lays down an enjoyable session drawn from a lifetime of paying attention to the kinds of music that have been recognized as popular. His "Wondering," a waltz that changes rhythm several times, captures your imagination with its air of mystery. An open, freewheeling trumpet solo with echo, followed by Buk’s fiery blues-laced electric guitar blast, jar the listener’s emotions. The leader follows that up with "A.F.B.," a New Orleans shuffle that features Greg Witchel’s blues harp. Buk adds a country & western flavor, while pianist Charlie Giordano pounds out a barrelhouse stomp that everyone can appreciate. The program finishes with Buk’s ballad "Downtime," which represents most of the artist’s eponymous session. With memorable pop/rock melodies, a driving back beat, and enjoyable "feel good" music, Askold Buk’s latest project smokes.
Track Listing: Bella Luna; Iguana; Volcano; Without You; Big Slinky; One More Bar; Picklehead; Wondering; A.F.B.; Downtime.Collective
Personnel: Askold Buk- guitars; Gene Eames- electric bass; Brian Shanley- drums; Ken Fradley- trumpet; Charlie Giordano- piano, keyboards; Jack Waltrip- tenor saxophone; Bob Sherwin- alto saxophone; Greg Witchel- harmonica.