California Guitar Trio - The first decade - 2003


Belgian Bert Lams, Japanese Hideyo Moriya and American Paul Richards constitute the international and singular equilateral triangle that is the California Guitar Trio, a peculiar band of Fripp-esque ancestry and, specifically, attached to his veteran Guitar Craft didactic project, where they were advanced pupils, showing their skills in such projects as The League Of Crafty Guitarists or the Robert Fripp String Quintet.


Formed as a solid trio from early 90's, they've developed an interesting discography where, occasionally but significantly, have contributed some distinguished members of the crimsonian factory, like Fripp himself, Trey Gunn or percussionist Pat Mastelotto. If, at first sight, a three guitar formation could seem a quite restrictive and monotonous choice, truth is that this trio use their six (eighteen..) strings in a really exemplary way, extracting all kinds of sounds and shades from their instruments. So, guitar turns to percussion, piano or any other instrument you can imagine, and the resulting music is really colorful: blues, rock, jazz, cadenced themes or rhythmical tracks. The whole thing is compiled on this “The First Decade”, which features 19 short tracks, disposed as a kaleidoscope (as one of the songs is titled) where the musical diversity of the trio is displayed. From the groovy power on "Blockhead", to the winding cadence of "Melrose Avenue", through the Fripp-esque touch on "Kan-Non Power" or the crystal melodies of California Guitar Trio's classic "Train To Lamy Suite", which is presented on both studio and live versions.


This is a very recommendable doorway to the thought-provoking musical universe that these privileged eighteen strings constitute.

author - date - rating - label

Héctor Gómez - January 2004 -   - Inside Out