28

Allan Holdsworth: Hard Hat Area

Glenn Astarita By

Sign in to view read count
Track review of "Low Levels, High Stakes"

Allan Holdsworth: Hard Hat Area Allan Holdsworth is one of the most heralded guitarists of modern times, namely among the progressive rock and jazz elite. Vastly influential and maintaining an active touring schedule, the artist's craft is often imitated yet never duplicated. Originally released in 1993, Hard Hat Area looms as one of the guitarist's premier solo outings.

Holdsworth demands the utmost from his drummers. Here, Gary Husband—a legend in his own right—tenders the polyrhythmic vehicle on the blithe, yet torridly gravitating "Low Levels, High Stakes." Here, the guitarist's melodically resonating legato lines bespeak joy, lament, and ominous events as the band commences with surging intensity, abetted by bassist Skuli Sverrisson's recoiling bass parts. Husband peppers, prods, and goes for the gusto as the band ascends towards a towering zenith, shaded by keyboardist Steve Hunt's supply melodic synth lines. Naturally, Holdsworth tears it up during the bridge atop the drummer's crackling tom rolls and vicious cymbals hits, but finalizes via the opening harmonic interval executed by Hunt.

The digital sanitation and remastering effort activates a more dynamic soundstage. And while Holdsworth's storied legacy contains innumerable shining moments, pieces such as "Low Levels, High Stakes" and other tracks on Hard Hat Area supply the bracing refresh of a minor classic.


Track Listing:

Personnel: Allan Holdsworth: guitar, SynthAxe; Steve Hunt: keyboards; Skuli Sverrisson: bass guitar; Gary Husband: drums.

Year Released: 2012 | Record Label: Moonjune Records | Style: Fusion/Progressive Rock


Shop

More Articles

Read The Picasso Zone CD/LP/Track Review The Picasso Zone
by Franz A. Matzner
Published: February 23, 2017
Read The MUH Trio – Prague After Dark CD/LP/Track Review The MUH Trio – Prague After Dark
by C. Michael Bailey
Published: February 23, 2017
Read Les Deux Versants Se Regardent CD/LP/Track Review Les Deux Versants Se Regardent
by John Sharpe
Published: February 23, 2017
Read Molto Bene CD/LP/Track Review Molto Bene
by Mark Corroto
Published: February 23, 2017
Read Fellowship CD/LP/Track Review Fellowship
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: February 22, 2017
Read E.S.T. Symphony CD/LP/Track Review E.S.T. Symphony
by Karl Ackermann
Published: February 22, 2017
Read "Los Guachos V" CD/LP/Track Review Los Guachos V
by Budd Kopman
Published: July 1, 2016
Read "For King & Country" CD/LP/Track Review For King & Country
by Glenn Astarita
Published: October 6, 2016
Read "Samba Gostoso" CD/LP/Track Review Samba Gostoso
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: July 6, 2016
Read "Disappearing Day" CD/LP/Track Review Disappearing Day
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: July 21, 2016
Read "Rough Enough" CD/LP/Track Review Rough Enough
by Nicola Negri
Published: August 7, 2016
Read "Classic! Live at Newport" CD/LP/Track Review Classic! Live at Newport
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: July 8, 2016

Post a comment

comments powered by Disqus

Sponsor: ECM Records | BUY NOW  

Support our sponsor

Support All About Jazz's Future

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

Buy it!