Chapman Stick virtuoso Steve Hahn really is quite the musician. Not only has he mastered the intricate nature of the Chapman Stick (an interesting instrument that virtually allows you to use both hands and play bass and guitar at the same time using a tapping technique) but he is also a fine trumpet player. Steve has assembled a "Trumpet Pedalstand" which allows him to play Stick and trumpet at the same time! This 12 song collection contains original songs and cover versions of prog and jazz classics, and is a refreshing and mesmerizing platter of virtuoso musicianship.
There's just so many layers to the sounds that can be eminated from the Chapman Stick, as evidenced by Hahn's cover of the Beatles classic "Norwegian Wood/Vampire." Hahn's intricate lines and rhythms are complemented gently by Ernie Crews percussion for a rich tonal collage of sounds. "Harmonic Poem" and "Stickburst" are two intriguing yet short originals that showcase some speedy yet melodic Stick runs from Hahn. Some other fun covers are Weather Report's "Birdland", where Hahn throws in some neat, funky guitar sounds with the Stick, replicating the classic Jaco Pastorius lines, and the Miles Davis classic "In a Silent Way." Tower of Power's "What is Hip" is performed with a deep groove, as Hahn's thick bass lines counter against funky lead melodies, and the Gentle Giant staples "Raconteur Troubadour/Acquiring the Taste" and "Spooky Boogie" are given royal, intricate treatment. The large movement originals "Big Heavy Critter/Incidental Improv/Waterbabies" and "Funk Potpourri"(a King Crimson inspired piece that features two of Hahn's friends and fellow Stick players, Dieter Flechtenmacher and Johnny Fleury) showcase Hahn's songwriting talents, both being melodic flights as well as landscapes for his Stick and trumpet talents. Hearing him laying down jazzy rhythmic comps on the Chapman Stick while soloing on the trumpet is truly amazing to hear!
This a wonderful CD that is fun and technically impressive all at the same time. Hahn is a monster player who is easily in the same league as Tony Levin, Trey Gunn, John Edmonds and Sean Malone.