By Scott Gudell
Three years after his debut release, jazz/fusion guitarist Colin Cannon is back with Glenville. As with 2009’s release In Summary, Glenville is, as Cannon said, “a loose concept album like In Summary was.” While the first album moved from chords to riffs to repeats and improv, it was, in many ways, a musical diary. Glenville picks up where the last disc left off.
Still accompanied by Manami Morita on piano (plus vibes), Zak Croxall on bass and Tom Hartman on drums (replaced by Devin Collins on a pair of tracks), there is continuity as well as evolution as the songs flow together seamlessly like a suite. Where the first disc focused on several years when Cannon and company were based in Boston, Glenville starts in Boston as early tracks on the CD are relatively quiet and introspective, and then the music migrates south to the hustle and bustle concrete streets of New York City. Cannon has also moved from an album containing all originals to one that cherry picks an inviting cover of the Beatles’ “Dear Prudence,” plus a collective group composition called “Savant Bar.” “Dear Prudence” starts off warm and tender and slowly introduces more and more improv, that becomes increasingly aggressive.
While the album opens with the ethereal softness found on much of the first disc, the final few tracks this time around stay upbeat and kinetic. Although Cannon himself is rightfully described as a jazz guitarist, he continues to echo the sounds of progressive rock guitarists such as Robert Fripp (King Crimson) and Steve Hackett (Genesis).
Colin Cannon’s sound and style are top notch and it will be interesting to see how the next release, the next piece of the puzzle, fits. Will it be a deeper evolution into the future or, as with so many Part IIIs, will it reach back to the early roots and invite back early Cannon mentors as guests, such as Rochester’s Bob Sneider and Steve Greene?? Stay tuned…