Pete McCann confesses to a love of music from several different streams which influenced him as he was growing. The guitarist opens up a few of those influences on Most Folks with a skill which reveals him to be not only a good listener, but also a writer with the ability to build a striking composition that gets to the core. Yes, he works with jazz, which he can mesh with rock, but he also knows how to get grunge going as well. He also writes a warm ballad and uses a Latin vibe to broaden the scope of his palette.
McCann pays tribute to John McLaughlin, one of his guitar heroes, on "JM. The melody, as is always the case here, makes an immediate statement. McCann takes it out on jazz harmony, giving the rein to John O'Gallagher, who pushes invention into the creative high end with edgy, hypnotic lines on the alto saxophone. Then the guitar man rocks out, employing all the facets that make the genre riveting: bent notes, feedback and pulsing electrifying lines, intermeshed with heavy chord work.
McCann takes the acoustic guitar into a calmer atmosphere to explore the beauty of "Las Tias. The Latin tune flows softly, combining the beautiful rain of his notes with Mike Holober's piano, which shades the melody with shifts in tempo and pulse, adding to the attraction. The band bops to "Rack 'Em High. Holober skitters and runs round the melody, unleashing a welter of notes, spurred by Mark Ferber on drums. McCann then finds his rock muse in a charged attack that ups the frenzy, before a light ebb comes in from O'Gallagher to wrap things up.
I love jazz because, even after many years as a professional performer, teacher and author on the subject, this music still possesses the element of deep mystery and surprise. I recently heard somebody say that if you can explain something, you take the mystery out of it
I love jazz because, even after many years as a professional performer, teacher and author on the subject, this music still possesses the element of deep mystery and surprise. I recently heard somebody say that if you can explain something, you take the mystery out of it. Not in this case! It seems that with every explanation, new questions arise exponentially! It's like the universe is constantly inviting (challenging) you to grow musically.