JazzTimes (p.84) - "On COINCIDENCE, Beck and Abercrombie engage in elegantly swinging extrapolations on several jazz standards while also digging into a couple of earthy blues numbers."
Personnel: Joe Beck (guitar); John Abercrombie (guitar).
John Abercrombie and Joe Beck are two veteran jazz guitarists who need no introduction; each has accomplished much as a leader and sideman, but it is a treat to hear them as a duo. This diverse studio set mixes familiar standards and jazz compositions, along with originals by both men. The intricate "Beautiful Love" and "I Should Care" both begin with elaborate solos, keeping their familiar melodies hidden until the final chorus. John Carisi's landmark composition "Israel" is usually performed with brass or a piano, but the guitarists' inventive solos and accompaniment for one another nicely fill out the sound of this still challenging decades-old piece. "My Funny Valentine" is recorded so frequently in the jazz world that it seems in danger of overexposure, though once more Abercrombie and Beck find a fresh path to this popular standard. The spacious, deliberate interpretation adds to the lyricism of "My Romance." They add a funky rhythmic riff to Miles Davis' "All Blues," giving it a new character, while Ornette Coleman's catchy blues "Turnaround" is tackled in a fairly straight-ahead manner. The originals also merit praise. Beck's strutting "Mikey Likes It" and Abercrombie's lovely ballad "Vingt-Six" will likely catch the ears of their fellow guitarists. Highly recommended! ~ Ken Dryden