Andrew Cheshire’s brilliant new solo acoustic guitar album consists of a single 32-minute original composition. In terms of the orchestral sound of the acoustic guitar and the overall recording quality, the album reminded me a little of Pat Metheny’s "One Quiet Night" album. Don’t get me wrong, you won’t find any familiar songs on this album, nor are you likely to find yourself singing any of the musical themes after listening to the album one time though. There are many dissonances and probably not a single minor or major chord throughout. However, what you will find here is a unique orchestral approach to playing modern solo guitar which exposes many colors, nuances and beautiful sonorities, all in a setting of a single fully-composed modern classical piece. There are some free sections, some rubato sections where Cheshire develops engaging melodic and rhythmic themes, and some song-like sections played in-time.
All of these sections melt into each other naturally, and are delivered with effortless virtuosity and sensitivity that forces you to stop and remind yourself occasionally that you are just listening to a single acoustic guitar. Cheshire has chosen to play finger-style on this album and that gives the album a whole other dimension when compared to his landmark 2001 solo guitar album "Guitar Noir" which was all played with a pick.
Once again Andrew Cheshire has proven that he is a unique innovator in the sparsely-populated niche between modern classical music and jazz, and a guitar virtuoso of the highest order. If you are not familiar with his music, it is well worth checking out his solo and trio recordings at his website.