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Various Artists: Jam on Guitars

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Jam on Guitars, a new twelve-track compilation from Magnatude, assembles wildly eclectic playing from guitarists across a wide variety of disciplines. With music that ranges from warm & bright roots-rock jams and minor key, bluesy shuffles to wah-wah drenched funk throwdowns and borderline easy listening, the disc’s genre-jumping demonstrates the guitar’s range, but proves to be a bit of an uneven listen.

Michael Lee Firkins’ “Took the Words Right Outta My Mouth,” kicks off the disc with Hammond B3 fills and the leader’s twangy, slightly fuzzed-out slide work, and is followed by Steve Morse’s harmonized-lead stomp, “Free in the Park.” A joyous horn-and-organ driven take on Sly and the Family Stone’s funk-rock staple “Dance to the Music” precedes an unlikely pairing that follows: Alex Skolnick of thrash metal bastion Testament and the ever-adventurous eight-string jazz-fusion master Charlie Hunter, who bounce snaky, fluid lines off each other’s amps in “Scorch,” a cerebral, syncopated jazz-funk shuffle.

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