Album Review: Wolfgang Muthspiel/Scott Colley/Brian Blade | Angular Blues | Music | Hudson Valley | Chronogram Magazine

Wolfgang Muthspiel/Scott Colley/Brian Blade Angular Blues

(ECM Records)

 Love of melody and collaborative creation pervades this alluring new recording by guitarist/composer Wolfgang Muthspiel, ably abetted by bassist/Hudson Valley resident Scott Colley and drummer Brian Blade. The trio reveals their manifold gifts right out of the gate on the album opener "Wondering," as the warm luster of Muthspiel's nylon-string acoustic guitar weaves tapestries of chordal lines around the rugged, tough-love tone of Colley's bass taking the piece's lead melody and Blade's coaxing such sweet, quiescent thunder from his kit. The title track certainly lives up to its name in its start-stop dynamics, while developing a singularly orotund swing. And if there's a lovelier tune released in 2020 than Muthspiel's discreetly rapturous, countrified "Hüttengriffe," it won't be for lack of sublime competition here. It all seems over too soon, but the nearly 54 minutes that comprise Angular Blues are rich with subtle, absorbing invention.

—James Keepnews

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