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Give 'Em Some

Bruce Arnold

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Album Review

With Give 'Em Some, guitarist Bruce Arnold continues to wring surprisingly varied and melodic results from 12-tone compositional methods, following up on what he began with 2000's A Few Dozen. The same lineup — bassist Ratzo B. Harris, drummer Tony Moreno — appears here, but Arnold pointedly goes for a more rock- and funk-oriented sound this time. He tends to set up his alluringly dissonant harmonic patterns with a clean sound, only to solo with all-out distortion, wah effects, and sui generis sounds called forth from the synth pickup on his Fender Strat. Harris plays both acoustic and electric bass with aplomb. The disc begins with the Schoenberg-dedicated "Blues for Arnie" and rocks hard through the next two cuts before relenting with the more ethereal "Techtonic" and "Timeline." The latter segues into a funky breakdown toward the end, a groove based on a five-bar phrase that the band reprises on the final track, aptly titled "Foggy Timeline Breakdown." Moreno steps out front on the abstract "Rush," setting rolling tom-toms and percussion against Arnold's harmonized, chorusy ruminations. This music demonstrates something Schoenberg and his followers couldn't have foreseen: that serialism has applications beyond the concert hall and may even be of use to a guitar power trio. ~ David R. Adler, Rovi

Biography

Genre: Jazz

Years Active: '80s, '90s, '00s

Guitarist, author, and educator Bruce Arnold was raised in South Dakota, where his first exposure to music as a child came with accordion lessons. When he saw the Beatles on The Ed Sullivan Show at the age of seven, however, he developed an interest in the guitar and eventually began playing blues music. His taste expanded into jazz in high school, and he went to the University of South Dakota to study music. He transferred to the Berklee College of Music in Boston in 1976. After graduating, he studied...
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Give 'Em Some, Bruce Arnold
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