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From the Inside Out

Survey with the Strings On Top

By Published: June 20, 2007

Beck proves to be a ballad interpreter who allows the original melody to whisper through his own vision. "But Beautiful" retains that gorgeous, almost timeless melody over which Tony Bennett, for example, loves to linger, but within these eight minutes Beck finds time and space to beautifully improvise on its underlying chords, with perfect, literally perfect, rhythmic support. The trio unravels the chords of "(I Don't Stand) A Ghost of a Chance with You" into ribbons, and then neatly ties these ribbons back up into colorful knots and bows, while "Cry Me a River" suggests the soft strong touch of Barney Kessel.

Beck also contributes two of his own tunes. "A Little Blue" is precisely that, a loping blues shuffle where he sharpens his chords and attack, and shows off his Chet Atkins and George Benson chops. "Dancing to San Xavier" is evocative in both title and impact; Beck's guitar sort of hovers between clouds of airy melodic lines, while DiBriano and Arpino samba with only the loosest of gossamer connections between them, until everyone descends upon a spontaneous improvisational eruption of flowing, hot chords to close.



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