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O'Leary, Pasborg & Friis-Nielsen - Støj

Grego Edwards, gapplegatemusicreview

Today we have a CD appropriate to the milestone, a kick-tail guitar trio set with the remarkable Mark O'Leary improvising his way into the stratosphere. Støj (Ayler 072) would get my vote for the Gapplegate Inner Circle of Mother Guitarist CDs Award, which doesn't exist really, but it wins anyway along with a few others so far this year.

I've reviewed some excellent examples of his work on these pages (search his name on the search box and you'll find them), but this one is in the most definite directional mode. Not that the others weren't but he flourishes especially finely with the trio he has fielded. It's Peter Frils-Nielsen on bass, Stefan Pasborg, drums. They do a marvelously convincing job aiding, abetting, and spurring O'Leary on, adding two separate yet related improvisational voices to Mark's.

This is rock-laced free improv of a definite "jazz" inflection. They basically let it rip over the course of the CD's 56 minutes in nine interrelated sections. It's flat-out hitting it with a few moments of relative quescence. Maestro O'Leary's considerable prowess is harnessed to scaling expressive heights much of the time in rapid, freely articulated phrasings that flow in and out of time along with the trio. This is a lining bag more than a noise-sound excursion for the most part. O'Leary weaves some exceptionally complex, burning, quicksilver-laced lines, though. Some of the very best coming out of a new cat on the block.

It's an elated performance of hard-charging freedom that sends out some very hip smoke-signals, Jack! He's most definitely among the handful of most promising young improvisational guitarists working today. I mean that. Listen to this one! Click the Ayler link on this site and you'll get more info.