In the tradition of the great electric fusion guitarists, Hugh Ferguson offers his cd The Jungle. His tone and technique are similar to the best around, and as each song passes the music seems to expose yet another facet to his playing.
He shows a great sense for grooves, setting his band in motion with highly memorable melodies, and a hardedged fusion style. It becomes very apparent in listening to Ferguson that he has payed homage to the likes of McLaughlin, Gambale, Beck, and whether he'd acknowledge it or not, I can hear some Connors, Holdsworth or Garseds' legato swing in certain songs. He has the perfect combination of rock and jazz showing in his music, and borrows equally from both, he also shows a more subtle command on the beautiful ballad Lost Sunset.
Hugh Ferguson is no amature on the guitar, nor does he have any lacking in his approach to song composition. He has an extensive background in the study of his craft, and it all culminates in his playing. This is how the guitar should be featured in a band setting, great melodic interaction with his band members, and he is a terror as a soloist. Yet never do you get the impression that you are hearing a musician that is trying to show his entire repertoire as a player.
There is not a weak song on this cd, and the music has a cohesive feel from start to finish, nothing is out of place or comes across as filler material. It is one of those cds that seem all to short, another sign of a hihgly listenable recording. I can only hope that Hugh Ferguson continues to produce such music of high integrity. He has a very fresh sound, is a gifted composer, and also has his own voice on the guitar, a combination that is rare these days. I for one will be keeping my eyes and ears open for anything new he comes up with.
CD BABY Review
Though influenced by the fusion masters, has his own voice
author: Joe Barbarotta
Borrowing from various genres is what fusion is all about. Here,
Ferguson mines the fertile soil of shred metal, prog, seventies
fusion, and straight ahead jazz and comes up with an entertaining cd.
Though there is plenty of guitar chops to go around, it's the quality
of the compositions that makes this one a winner.