Nels Cline is one of the most accomplished modern guitar players, having mastered many genres from alternative country and Americana to punk and indie rock to jazz and experimental. Today he’s showing off his chops in the latter genre with a new album called Share the Wealth that will be released on November 13, 2020 on acclaimed jazz label Blue Note. Share the Wealth is Cline’s third album for Blue Note and features an expanded version of his Nels Cline Singers, acclaimed saxophonist Skerik, Trevor Dunn of Mr. Bungle, keyboardist Brian Marsella, drummer Scott Amendola and percussionist Cyro Baptista.
In addition to announcing the new album, he’s also shared a gorgeous piece of music called “Beam/Spiral,” which features a robust brass and wind section, intricate guitar lines, soothing piano and an exciting crescendo at the midpoint with a driving rock influenced drum beat. Share the Wealth was recorded in just two days in Brooklyn at The Bunker, with very little pre-written material brought into the sessions. In fact, the material that resulted in the album wasn’t even intended to be released as-recorded, with Cline holding a different ambition for the music. Ultimately he changed his mind and allowed the improvisation to stay intact.
“This band has never even played a live gig together,” said Nels Cline. “So basically, the whole thing was an experiment. We recorded all these jams with the idea that I was going to take tiny fragments of them and create this kind of cut-and-paste, collaged, psychedelic record like an Os Mutantes record or something crazy like that. But when I listened back to these jams, I liked them so much that I wanted to keep them intact. And some of the most startling transitions, they’re not edits. They just happened in the course of these long improvisations in the studio, almost like magic.”
Photo Credit: Alyssa Fried