PAT METHENY puts down the guitar and lets others play for him

Hardly any other musician has revolutionized the electric guitar in the last four and a half decades as fundamentally as Pat Metheny. With his Synclavier guitar and various other technical innovations, but also with his cinematic imagery, he has created countless sound epics. On his new album "Road To The Sun" he does not play himself for long stretches, but lets play.

The record consists of three parts. In the first suite "Four Paths Of Light" the classical virtuoso Jason Vieaux steps in, the six-part Ritel suite is interpreted by the renowned L. A. Guitar Quartet, and only the last piece from the pen of the Estonian composer Arvo Pärt is played by Metheny himself. The names give it away - "Road To The Sun" serves neither jazz nor jazz rock, but it is music for classical guitar.

Even after a heart attack Ton Scherpenzeel still feels like KAYAK

Ton Scherpenzeel can't let it go. The 68-year-old is a musician through and through, neither Corona nor a heart attack, which he suffered in October 2019, stops him. For 49 years now (with a long break between 1981 and 1999) he has been the boss of Kayak, arguably the most important Dutch prog rock band besides Focus. Whereas: he would disagree with the last sentence, because he says: "We could play a concert exclusively with prog music, yes. But we are not a prog band. That would only be half the truth."

Even after a heart attack Ton Scherpenzeel still feels like KAYAK

Ton Scherpenzeel can't let it go. The 68-year-old is a musician through and through, neither Corona nor a heart attack, which he suffered in October 2019, stops him. For 49 years now (with a long break between 1981 and 1999) he has been the boss of Kayak, arguably the most important Dutch prog rock band besides Focus. Whereas: he would disagree with the last sentence, because he says: "We could play a concert exclusively with prog music, yes. But we are not a prog band. That would only be half the truth."

Older and healthier, RYLEY WALKER finds himself on "Course In Fable"

Unwrapping an album by Ryley Walker is always a bit like freeing a Christmas present from its wrapping paper. If you like Walker, you know you can't be disappointed, and yet it's always completely open what exactly is waiting inside the wrapping. Currently Ryley has two new albums under his belt, the song album "Course In Fable" on his own new label Husky Pants and a drone album with Chicago permanent innovator David Grubbs.

"Course In Fable" is reminiscent in many ways of Ryley's much-lauded work "Primrose Green," except this time he weaves his influences from folk and soul to minimal music and psychedelic to avant-garde jazz much more subtly. "'Primrose Green' certainly wasn't as clearly defined as 'Course In Fable,'" Walker agrees. "The new album is much more in line with my personality. I feel it's more genuine and deeper than my previous records. However, I have to admit that I wanted to make an album that sounded like Peter Gabriel on the Thrill Jockey label."

With "A Secret To Hide" POVERTY'S NO CRIME start into their anniversary year

Poverty's No Crime are rich. Rich in experience, after all, the band has existed for 30 years, 20 of which were completed in the current line-up alone. Rich in creativity, with "A Secret To Hide" the number of released albums rises to eight. And rich in musical competence, their melodic progressive metal has maintained an amazing qualitative and stylistic consistency over all this time. The quintet is correspondingly well-rehearsed, and the fact that - due to the pandemic - they weren't able to meet in person once during the recordings this time didn't pose a major challenge: "We've been making music together for so long, there's a consensus among us as to how things should go. There are hardly any controversies, we have found an effective division of labour", explains singer and guitarist Volker Walsemann

Even Corona can't shake the newcomers of IVY GOLD on their debut

"We didn't actually plan to make an album, and certainly not to make it this big," says singer Manou, still seeming a bit baffled when it comes to why and how the rather private project with husband Sebastian Eder, ex-guitarist of prog-metallers Avalon, eventually turned into a band with a remarkable line-up and the debut "Six Dusty Winds". "We started writing together and eventually these ten, twelve songs were ready. Which we also wanted to record, but more or less just for us. Sebastian then pre-produced the songs. Because we both always have high standards, the whole thing should be well recorded." So it made sense to ask a proven star drummer with Grammy-winning production skills: "We both listen to a lot of Joe Bonamassa; at that time we often played something from Rock Candy Funk Party, a joint project of him and Tal Bergman, who is active there as a drummer and producer. We thought Tal would be just the right guy and contacted him, very profanely, via his homepage.

CAMERON GRAVES brings jazz rock and thrash metal to a common denominator on "Seven"

Nine o'clock in the morning in Los Angeles. Cameron Graves has not yet practiced the piano, but he has already completed his daily martial arts program. He especially appreciates the meditative aspect of Xingyiquan and reports that his mentor Stanley Clarke is also a big martial arts fan.

He has been friends with the ex-bassist of Return To Forever for many years: "When I was 17, I went to an audition with Stanley and took my friends from the West Coast Get Down [musician collective from Los Angeles; author's note] with me: Kamasi Washington, Ronald and Stephen Bruner [a.k.a. Thundercat; note], Miles Mosley. However, none of us made it, except Ronald, the drummer."

Ten years later, things did work out for Graves, albeit only as a keyboardist. "That did hurt me a bit!" laughs the pianist. "But I think Stanley did it on purpose because he saw a composer in me that he wanted to coach."