City Paper is not for tourists
The sublime interplay between guitarist Peter Leitch and pianist John Hicks recalls the introspective melodicism of the great Bill Evans/Jim Hall duo. While Leitch and Hicks have played in a quartet together for half a decade, and Hicks has recorded a duets collection with David Murray, Duality marks the pair’s collaborative debut. Hicks adapts his normally forceful playing to the new setting by laying down quiet left-hand bass lines and minimal right-hand flourishes that allow ample space for Leitch’s hornlike solos. Antonio Carlos Jobim’s “O Grand Amour” and Billy Strayhorn’s “Chelsea Bridge” receive appropriately misty interpretations here, while Hicks’ “After the Morning” ascends as softly as a sunrise. Leitch’s provocative title track is so named because it’s divided into two sections, one modal (or chordally static) and the other harmonically shifting. Throughout Duality, master engineer Rudy Van Gelder’s intimate production showcases the instruments’ tonal range.