Across the Margin: The Podcast

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Episode 128: Scott Metzger's Too Close To Reason

This episode of Across The Margin: The Podcast presents an interview with guitarist Scott Metzger, a musician who has spent the past decade earning a reputation as one of the most adventurous improvisers in live music. When he wasn’t sharing the stage with the likes of Phil Lesh, John Scofield or Nels Cline, he was playing to massive crowds with Joe Russo’s Almost Dead. His musical interests, however, run broader than his bonafides might suggest. During downtime from JRAD Metzger pursued projects like WOLF!, a hard-charging, fully electrified guitar trio that balanced tight compositions with group improvisation, and the Showdown Kids, an acoustic gypsy jazz trio. When the global pandemic darkened stages everywhere, Metzger hunkered down in Brooklyn and did what came naturally — he picked up the guitar every day and wrote instrumental music. Shortly thereafter, he booked time at a Brooklyn recording studio to document the guitar pieces he’d created. The result of those efforts is Too Close to Reason — Metzger’s first solo album and the focus of this episode. The 12-track collection, released by Royal Potato Family, showcases a more contemplative side of his musical personality. From the first swelling notes of the atmospheric ”Appropriate Wattage,” the album is full of musical surprises, starting with the fact that Metzger plays nearly every note of this primarily acoustic guitar-based album. The sole exception is “Only Child,” a ballad with Katie Jacoby, violinist for The Who (and Metzger’s wife). Too Close To Reason exposes trace elements of Metzger’s musical DNA through influences like Chet Atkins, Django Reinhardt, Jim Hall, and Richard Thompson, but it ultimately presents his own fully-formed and distinct voice as a guitarist. In short, his debut reveals an artist in full bloom who has honed his craft and knows himself, contradictions and all. Within this episode host Michael Shields and Scott Metzger discuss the musicians, the guitar, and the pandemic that inspired his new album. They expound upon the fascinating ways in which the first two singles, “Don’t Be a Stranger” and “Waltz For Beverly,” came to life while conversing about how special it is that he has had the opportunity to create music with his wife, violinist Katie Jacoby. They even discuss how the artist's recent addiction to running bolstered his capabilities in regard to his performing with Joe Russo’s Almost Dead, and so much more. Scott Metzger will celebrate the release of Too Close To Reason with four East Coast performances beginning at the end of March (currently on-sale) in Cambridge, New York City, Washington, DC and Philadelphia. 

Too Close To Reason is available March 4th, pre-order a 180-gram vinyl here!



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