180

Samo Salamon: Two Hours

Chris May By

Sign in to view read count
Samo Salamon: Two Hours Slovenian guitarist Samo Salamon has generated a good degree of heat over the last couple of years, first with his self-published '03 album Ornethology, then with last year's Ela's Dream. Both discs suggested the emergence of a young guitarist well on the way to finding a distinctive personal voice. The early promise is fulfilled on Two Hours, Salamon's first album with a US lineup, recorded in New York in late '04 with a tough local crew.

Salamon is engaging both as a guitarist and as a composer (all the tunes here are originals), and he brings the same agitated energy to both endeavours. His music is eager and edgy and excited, and his lines! pile up! climactic resolution! after climactic resolution! He can turn his hand to a more leisurely lyricism (as on "Empty Heart" and "The Lonely Tune," both, as their titles suggest, poignant introspections), but is most impressive on hot, jittery, up-tempo post-Ornette Coleman miniatures.

Salamon has picked 'n' mixed pragmatically from the harmolodic menu, but he hasn't bought the whole nine yards; when he's at his hottest, you can hear traces of James Blood Ulmer, but other lines recall Bill Frisell and early mentor John Scofield. Sonny Sharrock also peers around the corner from time to time. Salamon uses effects sparingly (mainly chorus and distortion) and has a penchant for tempo changes. He hasn't quite arrived at his destination yet, but Two Hours suggests he may soon.

Salamon's hands-across-the-ocean band here is busting. The album was recorded in just two hours, with one sotto voce rehearsal in bassist Mark Helias's apartment, thus necessitating a high degree of attentiveness and interaction between the musicians in the studio. The resulting collective spontaneity is well suited to Salamon's open-ended skeletal tunes and improvising abandon, and if the band doesn't always land on the one in perfect unison, a few ragged edges sit happily within the music. All three American musicians shine; saxophonist Tony Malaby is a particular thrill and delight, with split tones, growls, smears, lurches, jabs and body punches tumbling out of his tenor.

Salamon, whose recording activity is as prolix as his music, has announced no less than five new albums to be released this year and next—with a New York quintet, two different European quartets, a US/European quartet, and a trio with Drew Gress and Tom Rainey. On this occasion, then, it is safe to predict that he's "a musician we'll be hearing a lot more from in the future."


Track Listing: Empty Heart; One For Steve Lacy; A Melody For Her; Does David Know He's Not Brown?; Where's The Bill?; Silence Of The Poets; Mind Breezer; Blink; The Lonely Tune; Coffee With A Girl.

Personnel: Tony Malaby: tenor saxophone; Samo Salamon: guitar; Mark Helias: bass; Tom Rainey: drums.

Year Released: 2006 | Record Label: Fresh Sound New Talent | Style: Modern Jazz


Shop

CD/LP/Track Review
Read more articles
Pat Metheny Pat Metheny
guitar
Ornette Coleman Ornette Coleman
sax, alto
Bill Frisell Bill Frisell
guitar
John Scofield John Scofield
guitar
Chris Potter Chris Potter
reeds
Adam Rogers Adam Rogers
guitar
Gary Burton Gary Burton
vibraphone
Greg Osby Greg Osby
saxophone
Brad Shepik Brad Shepik
guitar

More Articles

Read June CD/LP/Track Review June
by Karl Ackermann
Published: February 19, 2017
Read The Final Concert CD/LP/Track Review The Final Concert
by John Sharpe
Published: February 19, 2017
Read Desire & Freedom CD/LP/Track Review Desire & Freedom
by Glenn Astarita
Published: February 19, 2017
Read On Hollywood Boulevard CD/LP/Track Review On Hollywood Boulevard
by Budd Kopman
Published: February 19, 2017
Read The Motorman's Son CD/LP/Track Review The Motorman's Son
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: February 18, 2017
Read "Ubuntu" CD/LP/Track Review Ubuntu
by James Nadal
Published: March 29, 2016
Read "Roots Of Unity" CD/LP/Track Review Roots Of Unity
by Roger Farbey
Published: January 25, 2017
Read "Breaking Point" CD/LP/Track Review Breaking Point
by Glenn Astarita
Published: June 10, 2016
Read "Quartet 1991" CD/LP/Track Review Quartet 1991
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: April 9, 2016
Read "Resolution" CD/LP/Track Review Resolution
by Dave Wayne
Published: November 15, 2016
Read "Some Great Songs Vol. 2" CD/LP/Track Review Some Great Songs Vol. 2
by Mark Sullivan
Published: February 6, 2017

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!