Tim Miller Trio
My bassist buddy Damian Erskine
recently hipped me to the guitarist Tim Miller
, a 30 yr old jazz fusion guitarist that is teaching at Berklee. I was unaware of him when I was in Boston, so he might be a recent addition to the faculty but I'm glad I found him now. After checking out as much youtube as I could find with him featured (most notably with the Janek Gwizdala group feat. Randy Brecker, Elliot Mason(the Mason Bros are Crazy
!), Tim Miller and Gary Husband). At his best, Miller builds his solos with an architectural precision, balancing melodic groundedness with gradually expanding intervallic structures to create very effective and fresh improvisations. To see what I mean, check this out
His legato phrasing is similar to that of Allan Holdsworth, but his trio with Joshua Davis on acoustic bass and Take Toriyama on drums leans more towards jazz than Fusion with a capitol 'F'. The record is nice blend of many different feelings tied together by his strong style of composition. None of the tracks are much over 4 minutes and most offer a nice progression from his melodies to his improvisational language and back, with tasteful features of his rhythm section somewhere in between. I think my favourite tune is the 9th track entitled 'TR'. The melody and his voicings are absolutely beautiful in the way they twist and turn into one another, always balanced and always fresh. He takes a solo that is short but still manages to 'get there' before he hands it off to Davis for an equally truncated solo before they take it out.
My only qualm at all with Tim's playing is that sometimes he jumps a little quickly into the fractally world of his angular motivic developments, leaving me feeling a little disconnected. But considering how much I've listened to his record, it must not bother me too much.