Sunday, August 06, 2006

Christopher Martin Hansen - The Road To Dublin

Hear The Track Here

Exactly a year ago I did an Artist Spotlight on Christopher Martin Hansen so I thought it was about time I brought this very gifted acoustic guitarist to your attention once again. Listen, if you don't get me the first time, I'm just going to keep on pestering you OK? Here you are, wandering around this vast arena of music, wondering where are all the REAL goodies at? I told you then and I'll tell you again now, you will NOT find a better acoustic guitarist in the manner of (for example ya understand) Leo Kottke anywhere else. This man's ability to pick (in every way) a winner makes other guitarists jaw drop and their hopes of excellence to shrivel and die. I jest of course, but not by much.

If you think all of those claims are highly exaggerated, then listen to the first 16 bars of this track and come back and tell me I am wrong. Ever since I first heard this artist I have been a confirmed fan, and when he delves into the classical side of the matter CMH Classical ooh la la and brrrrr. The Road From Dublin though is fairly recognisably based in the acoustic folk end of the genre but is Chris's hands it undergoes a subtle, but very beautiful change. The reason I brought up Leo Kottke earlier is because - in his modern material - Chris's work is dependent on much the same level of instrumental expertise and knowledgeable, intricate arrangements.

I've seen Leo Kottke live more than a few times and been amazed at the man's skill and talent. What amazes me about Kottke is the same thing that makes me like CMH so much. It is sooooo hard to make an acoustic guitar track that is exciting enough to maintain interest for a couple of minutes, let alone the well over five minutes The Road To Dublin takes up. I have seen Leo Kottke keep a couple of thousand people as quiet as a mouse with his music, and Christopher Martin Hansen has the same potential, and certainly much of the same talent. I know that acoustic music is bedevilled by the 'folk music' tag but this track transcends every genre I could name - except beautiful...

A work of art. MUST HAVE.

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