January/February 1997

Joe Diorio
I Remember You
RAM

Although this is subtitled "a tribute to Wes Montgomery," there are none of Wes' compositions or other tunes associated with him, and the 12 tracks include a drum solo, bass solo, and bass/drums duo. But if it's odd as a tribute, this is a very commendable guitar trio outing, as the leader also solos and plays duos with his cohorts so that all combinations are explored. Diorio is an intelligent soloist with original ideas, especially interesting when he throws dissonant voicings into his readings of tunes like "In a Sentimental Mood." The adventurous duo with drummer Steve Bagby is the highlight for me. Diorio's bassy, almost constricted tone works well on the discordant voicings, but causes things to sound a little muddled when bassist Steve Laspana's line gets at all involved ("Invitation"). This distraction is easily outweighed, however; all three men play well individually and collectively and the solos, duos, and trios flow together nicely. - Duck Baker

Originally published in January/February 1997
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