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November 1999

Earl Klugh
Peculiar Situation
Windham Hill

Guitarist Earl Klugh takes his graceful, elegant style and pushes its corners outward a bit on Peculiar Situation. For fans of his typically laid back fare there are catchy pieces like the breezy "Before You Go," (used on TV's Melrose Place) and the shuffling title track. There are also cloying bits of overdressed boudoir R&B surfacing in "Romantic Intent," and "Private Affair," with a pulse-refrain recalling Hall & Oates' "One on One." However, the blithely make-it-look-easy Klugh style also twists into jamming cornered flamenco play on the sharp-edged "Desert Paradise," and lends intriguing contrast to the world-weary vocals of Roberta Flack on the swinging "Now and Again," lending the piece a touching, bittersweet feel. "I'm Falling" showcases Klugh's fast-picked, warmly detailed style in its glory-lighting up a hooky, awe-struck melody. Peculiar Situation boasts a little something for everyone, and gently nudges Klugh's dependably listenable work in a few interesting new directions along the way.

Originally published in November 1999
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