Adam Smale: Out of the Blue

Here’s a clean sounding guitarist that knows his way around the frets. Adam Smale is in the Herb Ellis/Kenny Burrell line of guitarists, and there ain’t nothing wrong with that. These ten tunes have him in a trio of Phil Palombi/b and Keith Hall/dr bookending his quartet that adds Mathew Fries to the band. In the trio setting, “New Start” and the “ Jordu”-influenced “Original Sin” display his subtle and understated sense of swing, with deft interplay supplied by the stablemates. The clever back and forth on Wayne Shorter’s “Yes and Know” has the band shifting like NASCAR drivers, while they bop to the beat on the Parker inspired “Autumn Confirmation.” A bit of rock guitar pops through on “Night Drive,” contrasting with an acoustic reading of a lovely latin “Jazzenco.” If you want some inspiring fret work, check this one out.

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