Rudy Linka: Always Double Czech!

Born in the Czech Republic but a long-time resident of New York City, guitarist Rudy Linka joins forces with bassist George Mraz and Marvin “Smitty” Smith for a set that primarily features original compositions. A former student of John Abercrombie and a musical disciple of Abercrombie and John Scofield, Linka can play with a funky angular attitude (“Coming Through,” “Bob’s Tune”) or swing at a fast clip (“Room #428,” “Now This”). The sole standard, “Come Rain Or Come Shine,” grooves gently, allowing him to develop his solo and wax fluently over the changes. Other tunes include “Way Back,” an acoustic fingerpicking number with a modal New Age vibe, and “The Man From Waikiki,” a bossa nova.

Linka’s compositions are nice, and his playing is fluent and even inspired on occasion. Overall, it makes for a solid outing even if the brilliant moments are few and far between.