SMALL TOWN THERAPY
This violin and mandolin duo is joined from time to time with various guests to fill out their sound. Their sound is a kind of Third Stream acoustic jazz. That is to say there are as many classical references as jazz references in their music. Bluegrass is associated only by extension. Adam Roszkiewicz plays violin, mandolin, and guitar. Leif Karlstrom plays violin and guitar. They’re joined on various tracks by Lyndsay Pruett on violin and Eli West on guitar and octave mandolin.
The music is impressionistic. It carries great emotional weight and by the final cut, they have ranged far from the introspective pieces to the fifth track, “McAlpine’s,” that romps along on a Celtic-grass bent, then subsides back to the introspective “Tune For Paul.” The violin-mandolin duet “Cimarrón” builds in a dialogue between the voices that display not only a virtuosity, but a depth of message. As the project proceeds to the chaotic last track, “Throughout” visits the realm of free jazz and Ornette Coleman’s avant-garde sound experiments.
There is nothing traditional here. There are some excellent performances, but they’re far from bluegrass. These sound experiments should appeal to the more adventurous fans of bluegrass. Just like their music label’s logo says: “Great music, no boundaries.” (www.organic-records.com)RCB