Record Label and Music Spotlight 

January 2003

  

 

Dave Reynolds
on Guitar Dave

Jigsaw Seen
on Vibrophonic Recordings


Ray Bennett
on Mintspy / Voiceprint
LABEL SPOTLIGHT

JANUARY 2003 MUSIC & RECORD LABEL SPOTLIGHT

ADRIAN GALYSH - A real leap forward in both sound and scope in the fusion guitar world, the 2002 CD King Friday is the finest album yet from L.A.-based guitar ace Adrian Galysh who broke big with his 2000 album Venusian Sunrise. Assisted by some excellent players including guest keyboards from Mike Keneally, Galysh merges stylish fretboard work with memorable melodic contenton on King Friday. The rapidly ascending Galysh sounds influenced on some levels by ace pickers like Steve Vai and Steve Morse. Combined with influences like melodic flair of Yes virtuoso Steve Howe and it seems like a good case of the Steves! Interestingly the album’s one cover is smokin fusion instro of the ‘70s Sugarloaf hit “Green Eyed Lady” and the Galysh version even features the original Sugarloaf keyboard player and vocalist Jerry Corbetta. There is room for originality at the top of the guitar world and Galysh proves it with the instrumental guitar extrapolations of King Friday. www.adriangalysh.com


ASTRALWERKS - Back in the ‘60s singer songwriter Lee Hazlewood wrote top 40 records for Nancy Sinatra (the chart-topping “These Boots Are Made For Walkin’) and Dean Martin and having already worked closely with guitar innovator Duane Eddy of perfecting his late ‘50s twang. Kudos for NYC-based Astralwerks for their 2002 eclectic pop tribute to Hazlewood entitled Total Lee! - The Songs Of Lee Hazlewood. A range of prominent pop groups partake in the freshly recorded 16 track set including The Webb Brothers (the CD highlight with “Some Velvet Morning”), St. Etienne, Calexico and Tindersticks to name a few. Striking artwork, vintage photos and new interviews with the artist put a cool new face on Hazelwood’s timeless, ‘60s-flecked pop gems. www.astralwerks.com/total_lee/

GUITAR DAVE - Pastoral and meditative, the latest CD from Maryland guitarist Dave Reynolds is appropriately titled Solo. Merging his knowledge of jazz guitar technique with his expertise as a solo classical guitarist, his fourth CD, Solo features ten Reynolds solo guitar originals along with covers of “Prelude No. 5” from Heitor Villa-Lobos and “The Mozart Variations” by Fernando Sor. Having studied privately with Sharon Isbin and performed in master classes for Manuel Barrueco and Christopher Parkening, Reynolds once again proves his worth as a composing guitarist and recording artist with the extremely listenable nylon string guitar sounds of Solo. www.guitardave.com

HARVEY BAND - Rocking and rolling in Upstate, N.Y. since the release of their ‘93 album Crossfire, Harvey Band returns in style with their 2002 acoustic album Green Flats Road. Not acoustic in the traditional sense, the album is well rounded and flows like river with an abundance of scenic and melodic touches. Guitar ace Harvey Possemato displays some inspiring fretboard techniques and he receives strong support from fine players like Paul Hammerick (drums), Keith Laurier (bas) and Gary Guth (guitar, keyboards). Inspired by a beautiful country setting in the Catskill Mountains of New York, the all instrumental, superbly recorded 11 track Green Flats Road tastefully mixes country swing, jazz guitar techniques and pop sensibilities and overall the album makes for really pleasant listening indeed. Employing a range of vintage guitars including his Guild GF60NT, Possemato further establishes himself as a guitarist to keep an eye on. www.harveyband.com

MINTSPY / VOICEPRINT - Although he’s renowned as the bass player in the great, early '70s U.K. progressive rock group Flash, the multi-talented Ray Bennett has evolved into a fine guitar player over the years. So much so, that he’s in the midst of reforming Flash after nearly 30 years, although sadly without original Flash and Yes guitarist Pete Banks. Regarding the planned 2003 reformation of Flash, Bennett adds “And the way it worked out is that Peter Banks is not going to be involved. I'm playing guitar and we have a new bass player. Colin Carter and Mike Hough are the same as ever and in fine shape, and there will be a keyboard player.” Bennett’s 2001 solo album Whatever Falls clearly reflects the progress he’s made since moving to NYC back in the late ‘80s. A mix of atmospheric guitar-based rock instrumentals and songs that feature his vocals, the skillfully recorded Whatever Falls clearly falls into the progressive rock genre and is essential listening for those who enjoyed those fabulous Flash albums from the early ‘70s. Also available on CD from Bennett on Mintspy / Voiceprint is Angels & Ghosts—a 15 track compilation including lost Flash music featuring Banks, a snippet from a Bennett interview WLIR back in ‘77 as well as a range tracks recorded by Bennett since his arrival in NYC. Both CDs feature a wealth of historical information written by Bennett and rare color pictures. www.bennettmusic.com

VIBROPHONIC RECORDINGS - The ‘90s were kind to the spirit of ‘60s rock. One of the best group’s to came out of the ‘90s power pop revival, The Jigsaw Seen have an excellent CD out called Songs Mama Used To Sing on L.A.-based Vibrophonic Recordings. A collection of five 2002 tracks, the 10 track 33 minute set also spotlights five of the group’s well done tribute recordings from the mid to late ‘90s, including spirited covers of tracks by originally done by The Who (“Tattoo”), The Yardbirds (“Still I’m Sad”) and more. In addition the CD features dazzling cover art echoing those classic Warner Bros. Lp jackets of the late ‘60s. www.vibro-phonic.com


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