It's hard to pinhole the music of Askold Buk. Though the highly accomplished and versatile electric guitarist (and author of several books on guitar technique) engages in some impressive improvising on this self-titled release, it's far from a straight-ahead jazz record. It's more a melange of different styles - a little rock, a little jazz, some blues, a bit of world beat, a dash of funk - mixed together to create an original instrumental sound.
Many of Buk's compositions have a highly cinematic feel - not surprising, since his work has been featured in film before. Songs like "Iguana" - think Steely Dan with a twist of country twang - sound lifted from an evocative soundtrack to some imaginary movie. The smooth, romantic "Without You," featuring some nice muted trumpet work from Ken Fradley, sounds like a pop-soul single just waiting for lyrics to be added. "One More Bar" includes some truly remarkable guitar work in the mode of Dire Straits' Mark Knopfler. Though Buk's guitar playing is always exceptionally clean and under control, he does allow himself to throw down some hard funk on "Big Slinky," and play some mean blues on "A.F.B." and "Downtime."
Backed by the steady bass and drums of Gene Eames and Brian Shanley, plus occasional horns and keyboards, Buk proves he can handle himself well in virtually any musical context.
All About Jazz & Jazz Near You were built to promote jazz music: both recorded albums and live events. We rely primarily on venues, festivals and musicians to promote their events through our platform. With club closures, limited reopenings and an uncertain future, we've pivoted our platform to collect, promote and broadcast livestream concerts to support our jazz musician friends. This is a significant but neccesary step that will help musicians and venues now, and in the future. You can help offset the cost of this essential undertaking by making a donation today. In return, we'll deliver an ad-free experience (which includes hiding the sticky footer ad). Thank you!
Get more of a good thing
Our weekly newsletter highlights our top stories and includes your local jazz events calendar.