Guitarist and composer Andreas Kapsalis grew up in the Chicago suburbs with a fierce desire to play the guitar. At the age of 17 an accident required his left hand be operated on. Fearing he may never play guitar again, he experimented with a rare ten-finger tapping technique which does not require the use of a plectrum, only the ability to push down the strings accurately and forcefully on the fret board to produce sounds. He then learned to play all the scales and chords with his right hand. After therapy on the left hand Kapsalis eventually regained full motion and today has equal hand dexterity from which his exceptional technique abounds.
Guitarist and Croatian native Goran Ivanovic is the son of a Serbian father and a Bosnian Croat mother. Ivanovic studied at the Mozarteum in Salzburg with Elliot Fisk and Joaquin Clerch. With the world’s situation such as it is, his parents were expelled from Croatia during Ivanovic’s time at the Mozarteum. Granted political asylum in the United States, Ivanovic has become a familiar face on the Chicago music scene. He has taught as a guest artist at Carnegie Mellon University, Princeton University, Cornell University, University of Michigan, DePaul University, and Truman University. He has appeared at prestigious events such as Chicago World Music Festival, NY Guitar Festival, NY Jazz Festival, Wall To Wall Guitar Festival as well as at Blues Alley, Firefly Club, Joe's Pub and Chris Jazz Cafe.
If one thing can be said about guitarists, it is they have an insatiable appetite to learn about and listen to fantastically techniqued fellow artists. That being the case, guitarists will not want to miss this new collaboration between two of today’s most accomplished musicians. Even though this disc clocks in at less than 40 minutes of music, what is included is composition after composition of some of the fleetest of fretboard playing imaginable. From the first notes of "Shadow Thief" to the last strains of "Prorok," these two master musicians and technicians of the highest order literally tear it up.
With Ivanovic on the classical guitar and Kapsalis on the acoustic version, it just doesn’t make sense to think of the tracks as individual representatives because the combined effort of their work goes well beyond any conception of individual pieces. With music drawn mostly in the Spanish style of master Paco de Lucia, each of these artists brings a freshness and excitement to this collaboration rarely found in recorded music today.Highlights include the darkly rich harmonic terrain and speed of "Vertigo." The delicately restrained drive of "Arrhythmia" is full of different rhythmic shifts and tempos. Their ability to perfectly play their lines in totally sync with each other is unmatched. For guitarists this disc is essential, for lovers of instrumental guitar music it will be hard to find a better CD in 2009 than this one.