guitarist Dan Lambert's third release, features solo acoustic guitar improvisations built around folksy, organic themes. Unlike his overdubbed material, this record reveals a more spontaneous feel. At times reminiscent of Ralph Towner (eg. the beginning of "Baysbrown"), at others suggestive of John Fahey (eg. "In the Shade by the River"), Lambert has developed a distinctive style fusing elements of folk and jazz idioms. Melodies
offers relatively few pauses: the guitarist constantly progresses toward new developments, which take the form of arpeggiated chords, ringing single-note melodies, consonant strumming, or some combination of the aboveoften with repeated pedal points.
Despite the segmental advance of new ideas, many of which hint at being somewhat pre-arranged in nature, Lambert avoids harmonic complexity. A lot of the material on Melodies barely implies major or minor tonality; fifths and ninths are more the rule than sevenths. Octaves pop up everywhere, reinforcing the resonant sound the guitarist pursues to the exclusion of emotional tension. Melodies is a laid back record, with little pretense or suggestion. Not that Lambert's technical prowess is anything but superlative; it's just that he uses it to pursue consonance to the exclusion of dissonance. Listeners coming towards jazz from a folk perspective may find this record quite satisfying.
Personnel: Dan Lambert, acoustic guitar.