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Mundell Lowe - Guitar Moods (1956) [2004]

Mundell Lowe - Guitar Moods (1956) [2004]
MP3 CBR 320 kbps | 12 Tracks | 33:16 | 80 MB
Genre: Jazz | Label: Original Jazz Classics, Riverside, Fantasy

“ This is very much a chamber jazz set. Mundell Lowe plays "Our Waltz" as an unaccompanied guitar solo and his trio with bassist Trigger Alpert and drummer Ed Shaughnessy is joined by either Al Klink or Phil Bodner on various woodwinds during seven of the 11 other selections. The bass clarinet, flute, oboe, and English horn are quite atmospheric, adding to the beauty of the ballads. The brevity of the individual selections is understandable but it is unfortunate that this CD reissue is only 32 and a half minutes long, for what is here is quite memorable. Guitar Moods, which lives up to its name, is recommended anyway. (allmusic.com) ”

“ For fans of jazz guitar, the trio setting holds a special appeal. Not the familiar Nat King Cole style trio of guitar, piano, and bass, but rather the format where the guitarist is accompanied by bass and drums only, a situation which forces him to use chords and single note soloing to fill up the space.
Mundell Lowe ups the ante even more by playing a program consisting entirely of ballads, some of which are taken at a virtually tempoless pace. Lowe keeps things simple, employing basic chord shapes and sticking close to the melody in a style that bears a strong resemblance to Johnny Smith in his use of chords to carry the melody. The rhythm section is given little to do rather than provide atmosphere, and there are entire passages where they might as well have left the room as little as they play.

Lowe delights in all the possibilities of the open setting, letting his chords hang in the air to achieve a languid atmosphere. Maybe the oboe, English horn, and flute solos are a tad too sentimental, and perhaps a few mid-tempo tunes would have broken up the monotony that inevitably sets in with a project of this type, but there's still a great deal of beautiful guitar work here.

There's nothing like the satisfaction of discovering an obscure album that turns out to be great. Mundell Lowe has never really been given enough credit as a musician, but Guitar Moods is a wonderful entry in the field of jazz guitar recordings. (allaboutjazz.com)


1. Speak Low
2. We'll Be Together Again
3. Memories Of You
4. Ill Wind
5. You Don't Know What Love Is
6. I Dream Too Much
7. June In January
8. I'll Take Romance
9. It's So Peacefull In The Country
10. Our Waltz
11. I'm Old Fashioned
12. Goodbye


Mundell Lowe - guitar
Al Klink - bass clarinet, flute
Phil Bodner - oboe, English horn
Trigger Alpert - bass
Ed Shaughnessy - drums
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