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Dan McIntyre: Hourglass

With jazz guitar in such an advanced state and so many fine players on the scene, a straightahead specialist better be good or he’s/she’s going to get lost in the shuffle. While Chicago-based McIntyre suffers from one of the jazz guitarist’s most common syndromes in that he has an overly dark tone that almost sounds like he’s playing underwater, he makes up for it with fine fret work.

Cast in the mold of the likes of Wes Montgomery, Barney Kessel, Joe Pass and Herb Ellis, he has enviable technique and a seamless approach that enable him to spin off the type of long lines epitomizing mainstream jazz guitar in general. At the same time, he grooves hard, helped in no small part by pianist Dennis Luxion, bassist Nick Schneider, drummer Phil Gratteau, and percussionist Alejo Poveda. The program is pretty typical in structure in that it consists of an obligatory original and an assortment of standards. Nevertheless, surprises include Jobim’s not often heard “Waters of March” and “That Sunday that Summer,” a heart-wrencher associated with Nat King Cole. It all contributes to a fine outing by a player worth keeping an eye on.

Originally Published