That guitar players will ever stop reinterpreting Jimi Hendrix’ “Little Wing” is neither likely nor necessary. The song is so rich and inviting, so mesmerizing to play, its beautiful chord structure and melody are a siren’s call to any accomplished or ambitious player.
And Monte Montgomery is both. Incorporating classical, blues, and madrigal styles among his sources, his 10-minute interpretation of the Hendrix masterpiece is a highlight of this album of amplified acoustic-guitar music. Eleven of the other 12 songs aren’t to be dismissed, either. Montgomery is a more-than-passable songwriter and a pretty fair singer. It’s clear from the Johnny Winter-like funk of “River” to the driving Allman-Brothers-influenced “Let’s Go” and “The Company You Keep” that Montgomery is not afraid to make “big” music rock. Comparisons to the Allmans and fellow Austin native Eric Johnson (“Could’ve Loved You Forever”) are accurate and deserved. His ballads (“Love’s Last Holiday”) are big, too.