Unlike Hal’s second CD, OCEAN, which is considered a pure fingerstyle album, this third release, INFINITY, expands his steel string expression in terms of technique, composition, and arrangement.
“Hal’s playing on his latest CD, Infinity is all business – he’s a classically trained guitarist who plays in the best American fingerstyle tradition. Rather than populate a CD full of solo instrumental tracks, Hal has chosen to display his prodigious talent in various settings, such as vocal tracks, full band arrangements, and percussive duos, as well as solo guitar. Infinity thus suggests the infinity of a steel string player’s expressive potential. The instrumental track “Leo’s Dance” (a tribute to Leo Kottke) is a wonderful example of Hal’s appetite for creative arrangement, beginning as it does with solo guitar, adding percussion later, and winding up with a full band coda. Hal’s dedication to the guitar carries Infinity up to a higher level, one that should be experienced by open minded steel-string fans the world over.” –Guitar Nine Records
“‘Infinity’ features Hal’s well-structured solo guitar compositions, showing influences of Leo Kottke, Duck Baker and Tommy Emmanuel, primarily in his rhythmic intensity. His picking is fast, assertive and exceptionally clean. Hal’s solos hold up to repeated listening, the best among them including “Cartoon Rag”, “Tender Wagon Song” and “12-String Special,” a blues that begins with echoes of Leadbelly and leaps into aural outer space with insistent riffing in the middle and upper registers. The duo and ensemble pieces are tight and often recall European rock of the 1970s and 80s.” –Patrick Ragain, Minor 7th