Carl "Sherlock" Holmes

Investigation No. 1

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The lone LP by guitarist Carl "Sherlock" Holmes is a rarity in terms of both its availability and its virtues -- one of the most eclectic and fully realized LPs of the early jazz-funk era, Investigation No. 1 embraces everything from blistering, razor-edged grooves to lithe, mellow ballads to Latin-inspired jamming with equal dexterity. Holmes is a remarkable guitarist by any measure, with a grittier, more chaotic style than the norm -- the whiplash-inducing "Black Bag" is the most conventionally funky track here, but no less noteworthy is an imaginative cover of the oft-covered Bacharach/David chestnut "Close to You," which completely sidesteps banality thanks to its soulful yet nuanced groove. Highly recommended.