Gabor Szabo, Jimmy Stewart (g), Hal Gordon (perc), Jim Keltner (d), Louis Kabok (b)
Reference: SK 1002
Bar code: 8427328447027
Labeled the Nureyev of the guitar by jazz critic Leonard Feather, Gabor Szabo was at his creative peak at the end of the Sixties, when he recorded his masterpiece Bacchanal. Szabos Sixties quintet is on top form here (featuring guitarist Jimmy Stewart) with another of his unique collections of both jazz and pop hits. His restrained use of feedback at just the right moments shows Szabo was willing to open up to new sounds yet he keeps a tight grip on his signature sound throughout these eight cuts.
Originally recorded in February 1968, this CD version has the same tracks in the same order as list as the original release (out of print since the early 1980s) and with a tasteful digipack sleeve and original artwork.
"After recording four albums for Impulse in 1967, the distinctive guitarist Gabor Szabo cut three records for the Skye label in 1968, of which this LP, Bacchanal, is the strongest. Szabo's regular group of the era is heard on record for the last time: guitarist Jimmy Stewart, bassist Louis Kabok, drummer Jim Keltner and percussionist Hal Gordon. With the exception of two Szabo originals, the material is comprised of current pop tunes including two songs by Donovan, "Love Is Blue," "The Look of Love" and "Theme from the Valley of the Dolls." Despite what should have been a complete lack of potential, the Hungarian guitarist uplifts the material and mostly turns the pieces into worthwhile jazz."
Scott Yanow -All Music Guide
"One of the most original, sweepingly lyrical guitarists... a singular phenomenon."
"More exotic and kinetic than any other flurry in the past decade... he blends the sound of jazz guitar with echoes of Liverpool and images of India."