124

Bob Sneider & Paul Hoffmann: Interconnection

AAJ Staff By
Published:
Views: 3,204
Bob Sneider & Paul Hoffmann: Interconnection
Any literate review of Interconnection will mention the classic duo recordings Bill Evans and Jim Hall made in the mid-'60s, and for good reason: guitarist Bob Sneider and pianist Paul Hoffmann approach improvisation in much the same way. Their world is one of dynamic interaction, spare phrasing, polite poise, clean tone, and a certain intangible cerebral element which comes across by implication. Hoffmann's four-part suite which launches the record sounds so uncannily like the earlier recordings that it's almost scary.

Those comparisons hold Interconnection up to high standards, and to be honest the recording falls short. But is it fair to compare? Hmmm. Maybe some objective standards are called for here. The secret to making this sort of restrained playing work is to enliven it with quiet energy, a certain spark below the surface that percolates up in unexpected ways. Unfortunately there are quite a few times where this energy is just plain missing, as on the langorously slow "Azure Dreams," which founders and never really gets off the ground, or the bluesy "Rumblin'," which doesn't get deep enough into the soul of the blues.

Fortunately there are moments when the duo flies, as on the quiet storm of "Desafinado," with its understated rhythm and crystal clear melodies. Hoffman's "A Place to Hide" intertwines piano and guitar lines, riding off trills into sing-song fun; the Gershwins' "Bidin' My Time" deviates from the formula and brings a dance & song aesthetic into the mix. These are the more up-tempo pieces.

Sneider and Hoffmann are both at very high levels musically: their style, their communication, and their composition all reflect mature minds and capable hands. It's unfortunate that they chose to stick to the straight and narrow without livening things up more. Interconnection has the sort of sentimental softness which may just be appropriate for more laid-back listeners, but I can't say it works for me.

Visit Bob Sneider , Paul Hofmann and Sons of Sound on the web.


Track Listing: Jazz Suite For Guitar And Piano [1-4]: 1. Good Book 2. Another Cup Of Tea 3. Azure Dreams 4. Heart Of The Matter 5. Mood Indigo Aka Dreamy Blues 6. Rumblin' 7. Desafinado 8. Scooby 9. A Place To Hide 10. Bidin' My Time 11. Benjamin 12. Mini Me 13. This Town

Personnel: Bob Sneider: guitar; Paul Hoffmann: piano.

Year Released: 2004 | Record Label: Sons of Sound | Style: Straight-ahead/Mainstream


Shop For Jazz

  • High Peaks
    High Peaks
    Paul Hofmann & Bob Sneider
    Serve & Volley
  • Black Dahlia
    Black Dahlia
    Bob Sneider & Joe Locke Film Noir Project
    Nocturne For Ava
CD/LP/Track Review
Read more articles
Nocturne for Ava
Nocturne for Ava
Origin Records
2009
buy
All Through the Night
All Through the Night
Indies Records
2007
buy
Escapade
Escapade
Sons of Sound
2006
buy
Fallen Angel
Fallen Angel
Sons of Sound
2006
buy
Interconnection
Interconnection
Sons of Sound
2004
buy
Out of the Darkness
Out of the Darkness
Sons of Sound
2003
buy
Bill Evans Bill Evans
piano
Charlie Parker Charlie Parker
sax, alto
Stan Getz Stan Getz
sax, tenor
Jimmy Smith Jimmy Smith
organ, Hammond B3
Barney Kessel Barney Kessel
guitar, electric
Bud Powell Bud Powell
piano
Wynton Kelly Wynton Kelly
piano

More Articles

Post a comment

comments powered by Disqus

Support All About Jazz's Future

We need your help and we have a deal. Contribute $20 and we'll hide the six Google banner ads that appear on every page for a full year!

Fund All About Jazz's Future