Under the name Ivanovich, guitarist Chuck Johnson has taken a hiatus from his experimental rock band,
Spatula, to make another contribution to the renaissance of experimental guitar with an album entitled Solo Guitar. The underlying intention of the record seems to be to create a document of the guitar itself -- not of guitar music per se, but of the guitar as a physical entity. On Solo Guitar, Johnson takes the music of random objects and found sounds, and applies it to his instrument, offering us a sort of glossary of the sonic capacities of the unaccompanied guitar. Johnson?s musical cartography on Solo Guitar falls into three regions: mournful acoustic guitar that suggests John Fahey and Skip James, Captain Beefheart-inspired electric guitar, and very abstract and sometimes disorienting prepared guitar (tabletop guitar in which the basic tones and harmonics of the instrument are manipulated and distorted using foreign objects). With each guitar type, Johnson seems to discover the instrument anew, and the results are brooding and revelatory.