by Mark Sabbatini
Belgian guitarist Gilbert Isban is a formidable nylon finger-picking veteran on everything from classical to avant-garde. He makes his debut as a composer and arranger on his 13th album--and in this case, that proves to be a lucky number.
Water With A Smile is another of those albums purporting the equation Latin + world + acoustic folk/rock = innovative jazz but listening to these dozen songs, it's clear that's exactly what this is. Vocalist Lea Van Loo and ...read more
by Glenn Astarita
In somewhat of a loosely based connotation, Belgian based guitarist Gilbert Isbin could be the European counterpart to America’s legendary acoustic guitarist John Fahey. Mr. Isbin’s CDs have been reviewed here on All About Jazz in the recent past yet each offering from this master guitarist represents something distinct or thematic. Here, Isbin decides to revive the music of the late and often misunderstood composer/vocalist Nick Drake who died at the tender age of 26 in 1974 from a drug ...read more
by Robert Spencer
A most unusual and inviting disc: Gilbert Isbin plays guitar (classical and prepared), and Geert Verbeke plays a variety of percussion instruments. Together they make meditative, refreshing, and inviting music that often tends toward East Asian models both in sound quality and in sonic depth.
There's a great variety to the sound. On Secrets," for example, they seem to be able to achieve the shimmering sound of a synthesizer with acoustic effects alone: the beautiful natural resonance of bells, underlined ...read more