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REVIEW | Julian Lage: View With a Room

By Jeff Cebulski

View With a Room is the increasingly respected guitarist Julian Lage’s third album with his current working trio of bassist Jorge Roeder and Bad Plus drummer Peter King. Lage has crafted a pleasing, eclectically nuanced trio sound over several years, and this rendition delivers in spades. (Perhaps you have seen the videos.)

On View, Lage decided to include the seemingly-ever-present fellow guitarist Bill Frisell, who plays on seven of the 10 songs. The opening cut, “Tributary,” sounds like it was built on a line from Pat Metheny’s “Midwestern Nights Dream.” Once into the languid song, the interplay of Luge and Frisell becomes evident as they enter into Twangville.

When Frisell is not along for the ride, Lage makes up for it in spades; check out his encyclopedic array of style on “Castle Park.” King’s frenetic playing gets the record into energetic gear on “Word for Word,” where Lage shifts into Drive; Roeder gets a poignant short moment at the end. Frisell adds to the juice in “Auditorium,” an intricately rendered, arpeggio-laden tour de force.

Among other highlights are “Echo,” a waltz that suggests a Western; “Chavez,” a King-driven prancing down Riff Lane; Lage and Frisell’s funky, irreverent walk up and down the “Temple Steps”; and a reverent, atmospheric “Let Every Room Sing.”

This and his other trio recordings make evident the synchronicity Lage and his mates enjoy. A journey into Lage’s last five years especially is a worthwhile effort for fans of jazz-related guitar music.

Julian Lage: View With a Room | Blue Note, 2022.

Purchase Info: View with a Room


Julian Lage, guitar

Jorge Roeder, bass

Peter King, drums

Bill Frisell, guitar


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