REVIEW: Lloyd Spiegel – Live In Japan
With the backing of Cole Clark, as well as a few interview segments where Spiegel talks glowingly of the Melbourne company’s innovative acoustic guitars, it would be tempting to see this DVD as just a promotional item for the company, but that would be doing this excellent concert film a disservice. From the very first fingerpicked flurry of notes in set opener ‘Statesboro Blues,’ it becomes apparent that this is a demonstration of finely honed, honest and powerful acoustic blues by a player who has unbelievable command over the instrument.
Lots of close-ups and crisp audio production present Spiegel’s Cole Clark acoustics in their best light (although in a few spots a microphone stand gets in the way of seeing exactly what his fingers are doing, dammit!), and the clarity of every note is outstanding, but there’s a lot to enjoy here even for non guitar-playing blues fans, including a monster version of ‘Killing Floor’ and the sinister ‘Guilty.’ There’s also a touching ‘Somewhere Over the Rainbow’ which recalls Billy Thorpe’s famous rendition, yet could also be at home on a Gov’t Mule album.
Spiegel’s technique never falters and he has a very cool way of pushing the beat at times without ever sounding like he’s rushing. His open-string speedy fingerpicking licks could put a lot of shredders to shame, yet the quieter moments are just as powerful.
Cole Clark Records