Bar code: 8427328420792
Currently a member of Paul Motians Electric Bebop Band as well as Joey Barons latest group, Liller Joey, guitarist Steve Cardenas debuts as a leader on Fresh Sound with "Shebang", Steve is joined by Larry Grenadier on bass and Kenny Wollesen on drums for this trio set of original music.
"Shebang is an immensely satisfying guitar trio record. Bassist Larry Grenadier and drummer Kenny Wollesen join Steve Cardenas, one of the unsung guitar heavyweights of the New York jazz scene. Comprised entirely of Cardenas's original compositions, the album possesses that most elusive of qualities -- copious variety guided by a crystalline clarity of purpose. The roomy, breathing feel of the rhythm section creates an ideal environment for the flowing melodies of "Across the Way," "Shebang," "Safer Than Heaven," and "Make It So." On these tunes Cardenas achieves a loosely swinging lyricism that recalls Pat Metheny, whereas on "Lucky Number" and "Tai Chi Chai Tea" he hearkens back to the country-folk twang of John Scofield's Shinola period. "Mr. Mule," co-composed by Cardenas, Wollesen, and Jesse Murphy, is a playful foray into '70s-inflected garage rock; Cardenas employs distortion and reveals his unabashed eclecticism.
Three of the tracks feature Cardenas playing beautifully on acoustic guitar. "Del Cenote" and "Sacre Coeur" have a somewhat solemn character, while "Para Ti," with its lullaby-like melody and almost exaggeratedly sparse drum part, sings with an inspired simplicity."
David R. Adler -All Music Guide