TR3 - The Left Hand of Darkness
TR3 - On This Mountain Born in Clouds

Friday, November 2, 2001
NDSU Spectrum

Tim Reynolds shows a complex masterpiece

Travis Kroh
Staff Writer

Like most of the audience at last Saturday's concert at MSUM, I had only been exposed to Tim Reynolds' music through his work with Dave Matthews. Whatever our expectations were, few of usÊ got what we expected.

I'd venture to say that many in the crowd were surprised by the technology Reynolds used during his set. A lot of loops and sampling were peppered throughout the show, using four different guitars, primarily a six-string and 12-string pair of Martins.

Using samples he'd create right on stage, Reynolds weaved an intricate web of loops, and used it as a foundation for his unique brand of ultra-fast, ultra-complex acoustic work. The extensive use of technology during the show was a departure from the norm of acoustic guitarists, but as Reynolds said, "People generally like it because it's big and loud."

The variety of work that went into each tune was astounding. He could bounce his improvisation off of nearly anything, employing the use of prerecorded drum loops and bits and pieces of guitar taps and scrapes to manufacture and almost experimental-sounding masterpiece.

Reynolds himself was curiously silent throughout the show, only speaking a few lines between songs to make short commentary. Shortly before the end of the show, he quietly mentioned, "Remember, in an age when truth is the first victim of war, please think for yourself."

The opener, Greg Howard, played a Chapman Stick, which is an upright guitar-like instrument where the strings are tapped instead of plucked and played with both hands. I've never heard anything like it, and this guy was good.

Howard played a few covers, and it was cool to hear such a different take on stuff like Dave Matthews' "One Sweet World" and Bob Dylan's "All Along the Watchtower."