Harris, Michael: Tranz-Fused Instrumental Fusion Guitar 5.0/5.0Lion Music www.myspace.com/michaelharrisguitar www.michaelharrisguitar.com By Craig Hartranft, 10.11.2010
Tranz-Fused is some wild and whacky stuff, in the very best sense. You know Michael Harris as an expert guitarist lately from his Thought Chamber and Darkology projects, but probably mostly from his many solo projects. His most recent solo venture was the nearly pure neo-classical guitar jaunt Orchestrate (2006). Well, Tranz-Fused is totally outside the box in comparison to these latest projects. However, it's hardly outside Mr. Harris' guitar skills and genius.
Tranz-Fused is instrumental guitar fusion in the very best and most experimental sense. Imagine Michael Harris applying his versatile talent to the domain of John Scofield, Al DiMeola, Scott Henderson or Jeff Beck, and you'll get the sonic picture. Using cleaner guitar work with less overdubs but also guitar synth and some special effects, Harris bends his strings and your mind with a complex adventure. Though elements of rock, jazz, prog and funk find their way into the compositions, don't expect any traditional metal shredding here. No, we're in realm of the the unknown and exploring every musical nook and cranny.
Many songs are whirlwinds of Harris's lightning complexity tempered by interloping segues of minimalist ingenuity. Certainly, Seizure Salad, Rocket Surgery, and Prosthetic Brain fit this description. But then Harris can move into breezy and fluid colors as on Blue Shift. Without doubt Harris is certainly enjoying the wide range of creativity this new expansive canvas allows. If anything he had as much fun inventing the song titles as their compositions. Finally kudos must go to his supporting cast of players, especially the bass players Adam Nitti, David Harbour, James Martin, and Bunny Brunel. I wonder how much of a challenge it was to keep up with Harris' blistering creativity? They did superb work.
Tranz-Fused finds guitarist Michael Harris going places only the most fearless guitarist would: the realm of fusion and experimental guitar. This is masterful, creative, and often totally over-the-top wild stuff. Call it genius or merely an exercise in boundless creativity for Harris, and pure intrigue for the listener.