Revered Southern California session guitarist Michael Landau has performed with a who’s who of pop, rock and jazz musicians. He steps out on his own with other notable artists throughout this two-CD set, capturing Landau’s gigs at the North Hollywood venue, "The Baked Potato." These sides are culled from gigs that were recorded between 1/7/04 and 1/19/06.
Disc one finds Landau steeped within a bone-crunching blues-rock format via a string of slow-tempo burners. With scolding lines and torrid crunch chords, the artist’s note-bending phraseology summons a polytonal vista. Drummer Toss Panos, bassist Jimmy Johnson and keyboardist Scott Kinsey rev it up on occasion, while Landau’s capable vocalizations primarily serve as just a bit of icing on the cake. On his self-penned piece titled "Born in the Rain," the guitarist pursues a high-octane, walking blues motif where his wailing fret-work is complete with hybrid, Hendrix-Stevie Ray overtones. Generally speaking, Landau’s resounding licks should provide a source of amazement for electric guitarists. Disc-two offers a counterbalancing notion, where the leader along with drummer Gary Novak and others embark upon a streamlined jazz-fusion vibe, teeming with sinuous undercurrents and ample soloing forays. Ultimately, it’s a high-impact musical statement, offering an insightful glimpse into Landau’s formidable faculties.