Bruce Arnold: Give `Em Some (2002)
Guitarist Bruce Arnold continues his odyssey of using the twelve tone in bringing together elements of jazz, rock and funk. His companions on this serious undertaking are Ratzo B. Harris and Tony Moreno, a duo with whom Arnold has been performing for more than 10 years. This music is not easy to listen to and will never find itself as an example in a "Jazz for Dummies" primer. As soon as the first few measures of the kick off tune "Blues for Arnie" are heard, the listener knows that this will be a session relying on dissonant and unusual chord progressions. "Timeline" fuses jazz and rock rhythms in an eerie sort of way recalling the work of the developer of the 12 tone system, Arnold Schönberg and perhaps some of his students such as Alban Berg and Anton von Webern. On this piece, Arnold's high voltage (literally high voltage) guitar meanders down the road of shifting melodic and harmonic patterns, as Moreno's nervous drums underscore urgency and tension created by the guitarist. On "Smoke", Arnold works himself into even more frenetic rock patterns with his twanging guitar and the rat-a-tat staccato of Moreno's drums. I for one found it hard to separate the guitar from Harris' electric bass, although on "Smoke" the division is easier to identify. This is avant-garde or free jazz at its most emancipated with heavy elements of rock thrown in and is not for the uninitiated.
Track Listing: Blues for Arnie; Give `Em Some; Smoke; Techtonic; Timeline; Rush; Foggy Timeline Breakdown
Personnel: Bruce Arnold - Guitar; Ratzo B. Harris Electric & Acoustic Bass; Tony Moreno - Drums/ Percussion