Exposé Online banner

Tony Harn — Revealed in Black and White
((Not on label) THCD-004, 2006, CD)

by Paul Hightower, Published 2007-03-01

Revealed in Black and White Cover art

Tony Harn’s latest is another easy recommendation for Exposé readers of all stripes. After flirting with a group format on his last outing, the English guitarist’s fourth album is a return to the approach of his first two excellent albums, From the Inside and Lifebox. Many of these songs exhibit his penchant for hypnotic arrangements focused on his delicate and agile guitar work. He never pushes or forces ideas, but instead lays down patterns and melodic lines that weave together in a way that’s utterly intoxicating. The most immediate reference points are Andy Summers and Pat Metheny with traces of John Scofield and Robert Fripp, though you never sense that Harn is aping other guitarists. Much of this has to do with the do-it-yourself approach he employs that builds compositions from the ground up based on multi-tracked guitars plus occasional percussion (digital) and bass. The album demonstrates how to build fully realized songs as a solo musician, and though Harn makes liberal use of loops and programming these are always serving a higher compositional purpose. This is best seen in the epic-length title track, where Harn builds layers of acoustic guitars that investigate myriad intersecting lines and melodic structures. While he flirts with modern rhythmic techniques and bits of experimentation, the overriding vibe of the album is soothing and refreshing, though things take a dirtier, Porcupine Tree sounding turn on “Hurdles” and Harn’s Police influences show in “Extravagance in Blue,” that starts off reggae-flavored but then shifts gears into an 80s pop groove. Delicious!


Filed under: New releases, Issue 34, 2006 releases

Related artist(s): Tony Harn

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...

Bill Bruford with Ralph Towner and Eddie Gomez - If Summer Had Its Ghosts – When Bill Bruford is on break from his drum duties with King Crimson, what would you expect him to do? Should he go on vacation or work in another less hectic, but rewarding mode? If Summer Had Its...  (1998) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues