It only takes listening to a few notes of this new instrumental album to make it clear that it is indeed a genuine Gregor Hilden CD. Brawny, dynamic guitar tones—created on selected vintage gear—subtle melodies, solid grooves, and blissful originals create the sonic picture that the German blues guitarist has already made a name for himself with.
Almost 60 minutes in length, the album was recorded with a high-caliber cast of players, including Martin Engelien on bass, Dieter Steinmann on drums, Thomas Hufschmidt on piano, and Horst Bergmeyer on organ. Both keyboardists are long-time contributors to Hilden’s projects, and their different styles are excellent compliments to one another.
The album’s cover tunes continue Hilden’s tradition of coming up with original arrangements of classic songs. In this case, his fresh approach to Grover Washington’s instrumental “Mr. Magic” is worthy of special mention.
Overall, In Phase successfully blends bluesy pieces, tunes that have a jazzy soul vibe, and even some rock material that serves as a vehicle for Hilden and his band to stretch their chops. The album forms a colorful musical arc with great authenticity from beginning to end.