Exposé Online banner

Micha Schellhaas — Double Take
((Not on label) no#, 2015, CD)

by Jon Davis, Published 2016-03-21

Double Take Cover art

There’s a long tradition of non-American guitarists making a pilgrimage of sorts to the United States to get in touch with some of the roots of their instrument. German guitarist Micha Schellhaas, after years of session work in Europe, decided to move to the US and delve into the history of blues, country, and rock guitar. On Double Take, he’s teamed up with Chad Wackerman (drums), Dave Marotta (bass), Jim Cox (keyboards), and Carl Verheyen (production and additional guitar). Wackerman needs no introduction here, as we’ve been covering his work for years. Cox has played with a wide variety of artists, from straight jazz to Barry Manilow and Weird Al. Marotta and Verheyen are also studio veterans, with Verheyen a member of latter-day Supertramp. On these nine tracks, Schellhaas displays expertise and taste on idioms ranging from the blues to New Orleans funk to hot countryish picking to slick jazz. In addition to his own solos on acoustic, electric, and slide guitar, Schellhaas leaves room for Cox lay out some tasty organ and piano (acoustic and electric). I’m often reminded of Harvey Mandel’s work in the 70s – guitar playing that (often) transcended genre limitations, inventive though not outrageously flashy in a technical sense. So don’t expect any flurries of 64th notes or tricky workouts in odd meters (except on the aptly titled “5&6”). This is just a really well done guitar album rooted in the blues but willing to wander a little ways outside the strict confines. Along with the previously mentioned Mandel, Steve Morse is a good reference. With Double Take, Micha Schellhaas proves that he’s got the styles down – now he needs to move on and develop a distinct style of his own.


Filed under: New releases, 2015 releases

Related artist(s): Micha Schellhaas, Chad Wackerman

Latest news

2017-11-16
Celebrate 10 Years of Fruits de Mer – As a special celebration for a decade of cool vinyl releases, our friends at Fruits de Mer records have prepared a limited edition reissue of an album by the first band ever to appear on the label: Schizo Fun Addict. The band is known for unusual release strag » Read more

2017-11-02
Mega Dodo Presents New Charity Album – Our friends at Mega Dodo have put together a lovely compilation of their artists performing new arrangements of nursery rhymes, and all the profits from sales of the album will benefit Save the Children. It features a number of artists we've covered. » Read more

2017-10-18
Phil Miller RIP – Sad word reaches us today of the passing of another of the great musicians of the Canterbury Scene — guitarist Phil Miller. His distinctive sound added greatly to Matching Mole, Hatfield and the North, and National Health, and he also contributed to albums by Caravan, Dave Stewart & Barbara Gaskin, and many others. He was 68. » Read more

2017-10-13
Moonjune to Distribute Tony Levin's Back Catalog – It has been announced that Moonjune will now handle distribution for Tony Levin's catalog of releases. These great albums will now be a bit easier to get hold of, so check out the site and see what you're missing. The veteran of King Crimson and Stick Men worked with a host of great players on these albums, and we've reviewed most of them over the course of the years. » Read more

2017-09-26
Bandcamp Shines Light on Niches We Like – Bandcamp has developed into one of the best places to discover new music, and even a lot of old music is showing up there. In addition, their staff has been producing periodic articles spotlighting some interesting stylistic areas. On 20 September, they published one called "The New Face of Prog Rock" which bears checking out. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

La Tulipe Noir - Nostiman Hemar – This Greek quintet has been around since the mid-90s, this being their fourth release, a concept album about Homer's Odyssey. The best thing about this band are the idiosyncratic vocals of lead...  (2007) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues