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California Guitar Trio - The First Decade  CD (album) cover


California Guitar Trio


Crossover Prog

3.92 | 12 ratings

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kev rowland
Special Collaborator
Honorary Collaborator
4 stars Not surprising, given the title of the CD, this is a compilation album culled from the first five studio albums of CGT. Also not surprising is that there are three of them, all playing acoustic guitar: the fact that only one of them is even American (and he doesn't come from California) doesn't seem to matter too much. Bert Lams, Hiedyo Moriya and Paul Richards met in 1987 when attending one of Robert Fripp's guitar seminars, and toured as part of his League Of Crafty Guitarists before forming their own band in 1990. Although they are sometimes joined by other musicians (most notably Tony Levin and Pat Mastelotto), it is as a pure trio that their music is best heard.

Having seen them recently I was astonished, as were the rest of the audience, at just how well these guys can play. This album goes some way to showing that as it is incredible what three guitars can sound like in the hands of masters. The music varies between folky through to classical and music that is extremely technical. It is an album best dipped in and out of as it isn't hard for attention to wonder, just because there is only so much music of this type that one can take in at once. It does take a lot of concentration to get the most of, and it doesn't work as background music either so the listener has to be prepared to spend some time on this, but there is no doubt that these guys can play.

Originally appeared in Feedback #78, Feb 04

kev rowland | 4/5 |


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