At the precipice of the new year, I wrote about some of my favorite new albums, and mentioned a flamenco guitar and jazz album entitled Hands, featuring Spanish guitars with Dave Holland on bass. It's slowly become a favorite of mine, especially the opening track, entitled Hands. Smack on headphones (or not, listen on the hi fi) and there are strumming guitars all around, it's saucy, sunny music that is heart-felt and just about as rich as any music I can think of. It's an essay on texture, and just when you think the guitars are done, Holland comes out with melody while the guitars recede to the background. If there's any one track currently on my iTunes that's on fire, it's this track. It bares comparison to the older music taken on by Liselvand and friends in the Nuove Musiche album (also thinking of their later Spanish album, and the earlier Alfabeto). While this is more traditional Spanish with jazz influences with percussion, the comparison is apt, simply because of the zesty textures and rich chords employed. Joyride is a successful jazz number taken up by the ensemble, written by Holland. That's to say nothing impolite about another Holland track that takes time to start up, The Whirling Dervish. The slower track, Camaron features Holland in a slower solo, lamenting even. But I find that track less successful upon repeated listens than the opening track, and the two Holland numbers. These are some very talented musicians, and the liner notes introduced me to the Carmona family, who has been playing guitar for generations. Pepe Habichuela's son is a featured player on the recording. The album is superb in its sound quality and clarity. It was recorded in March, 2009. A biberfan favorite.