Mario Calvitti of Allaboutjazz wrote a review and the Lonely Coyote is album of the week. Below you can find the enlish version:
The Lonely Coyote – Marc van Vugt
Sooner or later in almost every guitarist’s life comes the time to make a solo record, with no instruments other than his own, in one (or more) of the many possible varieties. For Dutchman Marc van Vugt, this moment came at the end of 2022, when he released his first solo guitar album after a 30-year professional career, much of it spent alongside vocalist Ineke VanDoorn, a partner in art and life. A composer before he was a guitarist, until now Van Vugt had not put the guitar at the center of his musical projects, devoting himself to writing for large groups, choirs and orchestras. Eventually, however, the desire to tell stories with the guitar prevailed, and the result is this The Lonely Coyote, with the subtitle Guitar Tales.
Although it is his first solo album, it is certainly not the work of a rookie; the musician’s experience and maturity emerge especially at the compositional level because of the focus on melodic development, concentrated on expressiveness and not virtuosity. To make the record, Van Vugt used nine different instruments, all strictly acoustic, each with its own voice. Sources of inspiration include Bill Connors, Ralph Towner, Pat Metheny, and Egberto Gismonti (to whom one could perhaps add John Abercrombie) on the cover, whose influence can be felt at various times on the record, which nevertheless remains a personal and original work
Metheny is perhaps the most direct and present inspiration, beginning with the opening track, “Benggg,” in which the harp-zither sound combined with that of the Guild 12-string cannot help but bring to mind the Missouri guitarist’s Pikasso guitar. The next track, “The Lonely Coyote,” performed on a Lowden baritone guitar, bears a dedication to Egberto (Gismonti), but it is in the following “Chorineke” that the Brazilian’s influence is most tangible, not least because of the timbre of the classical guitar, also present in “Simiane.” “In My Arms” introduces the most frequently used guitar on the album, a 1946 Martin present in five tracks, used here without overdubbing as well as in “Guitarlab” and its prelude, while in the middle part of “Sunny Side Up,” the album’s most eventful track, it is accompanied by four other guitars, including an acoustic bass and an alto guitar that we find again in the concluding “No Worries,” a lively, typically Brazilian melody.
The guitarist proves to be a thoroughbred storyteller, and his musical stories captivate the listener thanks to the quality of the themes and his mastery of the expressive possibilities of the instruments used to tell them. We can only highly recommend listening to the album, a real surprise, and hope that it does not remain an isolated title in his discography.
- Mario Calvitti
Album of the Week.