While ‘guitar’ plus ‘nova’ may imply a cosmic explosion of six-stringed pyrotechnics, Erik Wollo's guitar nova instead offers the pleasurably slow-burning radiance of nimble fingering and serene acoustic moods. Shifting away from Spotted Peccary's traditional focus on specifically North American sounds, these intricately layered Norwegian guitar melodies mark the first excursion on the label's new Wanderings offshoot.
Short and sweet, Blue Mountain (2:12) rises on soft strands plucked with pensive resolution. Similarly low-though-spirited Summer Tomorrow dances between strummed phrases and adroitly picked stringwork. Sliding strands extend like a series of wavering Rainbows (5:43), accompanied by a lovely latticework of notes and percussive clunks.
Basking in silvers and golds, The Eagle hovers in flight which seems to rise and fall over some verdant valley. Bass pulsations and a dreamy aura emerge from Source as do a pluck-y rhythm and elastic tonal bands.
Fantasia's cross-threaded background patterns are overlain with chimingly fluid doublets and Spanish-flavored meanderings. With a lightness in its lilt, Hjallepallo struts and twirls over a persistently chugging strum-rhythm. Carefully placed pluckings part to reveal the subtly droning darkness which swelters beneath a Secret Place.
The unassuming acoustic beauty of Guitar Nova smolders with aromatic fragrances and illuminates 14 scenes of idyllic peacefulness. Erik Wollo's six-stringed magic lulls as well as excites, particularly if one isn't averse to such truly musical undertakings. An 8.4 for loveliness and warmth which can provide a perfect blanket against winter's chill.