From the opening notes of Mann’s fretted guitar and Brozman’s slide work, you can’t help but be captivated.
Mann is known for his roots and blues fingerpicking on a variety of albums, method videos, and transcription books. Brozman is a musical polyglot most famous for being a prophet of the National guitar. Their pairing has created a stunning album.
The first thing that strikes you is the astonishing recording quality, with a deep sound that is warm and clear and fills the room, allowing both instruments to speak without being interrupted. The duo plays a range of new and vintage guitars from Bear Creek, Michael Dunn, National Resophonic, Santa Cruz, Wiessenborn, Stella, Gibson, and a guitarra portuguesa.
The second thing sneaks up on you in the simple beauty of the original compositions. The songs are mostly blues along with some Hawaiian-tinged traditional tunes and, for want of a better term, folk songs. Most of all, they allow the two musicians to stretch out and relax and play long solos that delve deep into the themes.
If you ever feel jaded by the current crop of blues or acoustic guitar albums, give this disc a spin. The depth of feeling and quality of musicianship within these simple songs will make you a believer.
This review originally appeared in VG‘s May ’00 issue.