Exposé Online banner

Kevin Kastning / Sándor Szabó — Invocation
(Greydisc GDR3534, 2017, CD)

by Peter Thelen, Published 2017-10-01

Invocation Cover art

Kastning and Szabó are a team that we have reviewed many times in these pages, and each new release by this duo is incrementally more interesting than the one that preceeded it. For the record, here Sandor Szabó plays only the 16-string classical guitar, while Kastning alternates between 36-string double contraguitar, 30-string contra-alto guitar, and 15-string extended classical guitar. The 14 pieces presented here wander freely, and seem to have a high improvisational content, merging ideas as they are made in real time, owing as much to space (absence of sound) as to the melodic scattering of sonic pixels and sprites and seemingly random chords. The alien feeling the listener experiences as the duo wander through caverns and portals truly makes for an otherworldly soundscape. There is no percussion so their wanderings are not anchored to any kind of enforced meter, thus offering additional freedom to create outside of that box. The listener needs to just let go of all the tethers of genre and follow freely wherever the duo goes, allowing the subtle shades and textures of the sound to be the only guide. This is a full length recording, nearly hitting the 80 minute mark overall, but the dreamy pace and wonderfully intricate detail of the two players’ intervoven melody lines, impossible chords and ever-shifting ideas, it never gets old. After at least two dozen spins I’m still discovering new things each time through. The feeling that much of this often reminds of the stillness and beauty of Steve Tibbetts’ Northern Song, evoking similar feelings, except here we have all these wonderful pan-dimensional guitars (and two guys who really know how to play them) and no percussion at all.


Filed under: New releases, 2017 releases

Related artist(s): Kevin Kastning, Sándor Szabó

Latest news

2018-07-31
Tomasz Stańko RIP – Tomasz Stańko, one of the greats of Eastern European jazz, has died at the age of 76. Stańko's career started in Krzysztof Komeda's quintet, where he contributed trumpet from 1963-1967, when he formed his own group. He worked extensively with Edward Vesala, Don Cherry, Zbigniew Seifert, Chico Freeman, Howard Johnson, Cecil Taylor, and many others. Many of his recordings have been released by ECM, an association that began in the mid-70s. » Read more

2018-07-09
Soft Machine Set to Release New Music – It's been 50 years since The Soft Machine changed the face of music with their first album. Their blend of psychedelic rock and jazz was unique, and while the band went through many changes before disbanding in 1981 — by which time there were no original members remaining — they remained an innovative force with a style all their own. » Read more

2018-07-01
7d Surfaces Happy Rhodes Back Catalog – We've covered singer Happy Rhodes before, both for her solo work and recently with The Security Project, but her 11 albums have been hard to track down. Until now. 7d features high-quality downloads of all her releases, and several of them are also available on CD. » Read more

2018-06-25
Fred Chalenor RIP – We have news of another sad passing in the world of creative music. Bassist Fred Chalenor, whose creativity featured on albums by Tone Dogs, Caveman Shoestore, and many more, died on June 23, 2018 after a long battle with Alzheimer's. Tributes have poured in from the many musicians and fans whose lives he touched. » Read more

2018-06-13
Jon Hiseman RIP – One of the great drummers of the rock era has died. Jon Hiseman was a veteran of such ground-breaking groups as Colosseum (I and II), Tempest, John Mayal's Bleusbreakers, and was a founding member of the innovative large band United Jazz + Rock Ensemble. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Porcupine Tree - The Incident – The Incident is Porcupine Tree’s tenth studio album. The double vinyl limited edition comes housed in a PVC slip case including a 48-page 12” book with the usual artsy photos plus a...  (2010) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues