Flotsam and Jetsam-The Cold
Arizona's thrash metal masters step up and show the new comers how it's really done. Produced by Ralph Patlan at Phase 4 Studios in Phoenix and cover art from Travis Smith (Iced Earth,Nevermore), this is a strong followup to 2005's Dreams of Death.
Pizzarelli Boys-Desert Island Dreamers
The "boys" in this case are Bucky Pizzarelli and his sons,guitarist John and upright bassist Martin. Bucky Pizzarelli,along with George Van Eps,is an early innovator in the 7-string guitar (didn't Steve Vai invent that?). This time around it's a mostly instrumental affair,despite John being a fantastic singer. The only vocal is a brief guest spot from Jessica Molaskey (AKA Mrs. John Pizzarelli), leaving the focus on guitar and the violin of Aaron Weinstein. Discreet and tasteful support comes from pianist Larry Fuller and drummer Tony Tedesco.
Having already established, with their eponymous debut, that they are certainly not The Bad Seeds II, Grinderman ups the ante with even more aggressive guitar work. Robert Fripp guests with a long guitar solo on the re-mix of the song "Heathen Child"(available at the Grinderman website). Also available on vinyl.
The world premier recoding of Lalo Schifrins nine part suite for solo guitar. Taking it's name from the Spanish word for "carnival" it captures the feeling of a celebration,bringing in folk and popular melodies into the classical guitar idiom.
Pantera-Cowboys From Hell
Certainly,this metal classic needs little explanation,so I'll just mention,it comes in the 2 disc and and 3 disc version. Speaking as one of those nut jobs that has to have everything by a band I like,I can't see getting anything but the 3 disc version.
Lefty Dizz-Aint It Nice to be Loved (Re-issue)
This is what might be the Cd debut of the long out of print 1989 third and final album from Chicago's Lefty Dizz. Fans of Chicago style blues guitar will find plenty to enjoy here, ferocious,aggressive guitar playing played with style and humor.
Death Angel-Relentless Retribution
So Flotsam and Jetsam aren't the only classic era thrash bands with a new album this week. Bay area thrashers return with an album that not only lives up to the past,it just might exceed it.
Fere's Hot Strings-Swing World Blues
This is gypsy jazz that sets it's net wide. Along with guitarist Fere Scheidegger's more traditional Django style originals,he and his group take on Peter Green's Black Magic Woman and Jimi Hendrix's Little Wing.
Even when playing it straight they toss in a fair amount of folk,swing and blues elements.
Kenny Neal-Hooked on Love
If you're one of those folks who believe you have to suffer to play the blues,listen up,we've got a real contender here. After an award winning career started in 1988 on Alligator Records,Louisiana's Kenny Neal had to temporally retire in 2005,due to health problems. During that period Neal lost his dad,sister and brother. He poured that tragedy into his music with his 2008 comeback "Let Life Flow". "Hooked on Love" continues and perhaps even improves upon that album. This will go down in his discography as a classic.
Accept-Blood of the Nations
With Accept already having tried to replace Udo Dirkschneider once,with 1989's completely terrible "Eat the Heat", metal fans were nervous with the announcement of a new singer. Into the fire stepped TT Quick's Mark Tornillo...to come out a winner! While Udo has a voice that is unmistakable,this is is no pale imitation. Aside from the slower "Kill the Pain" this is full speed ahead classic heavy metal. Udo is one of the best metal singers ever,and will be missed,but don't let it fool you into missing one of the best metal bands in the business.
T-Bone Walker-Armadillo 2
This is a two disc set of everything he recorded for the Imperial label,covering 1950 to 1954. Absolutely essential.
For those of us who enjoy some hard rock with zero candy coating,here comes Valient Thor's fifth album. It's no surprise these guys have gigged with bands like Motorhead,Early Man and Mastodon. Production from Jack Endino ensures that raw, pure guitar tones abound.
Robin Holcomb and Talking Pictures with Wayne Horvitz
The Bill Frisell fanatics among us (and really, who isn't?) will already recognize both Robin Holcomb and Wayne Horvitz from the Frisell extended family. Talking Pictures is a Vancouver group led by guitarist Ron Samworth. Consisting of guitar,cello,trumpet and percussion,they bring a very modern interpretation of jazz to the proceedings.
Kamelot-Poetry For The Poisoned
For album number nine Germany's power metal masters bring more of a progressive feel to the music while simultaneously making the songs tighter and shorter. Available in the increasingly common regular Cd, Cd with bonus DVD and vinyl editions.
Paul Chambers-Whims of Chambers
For our bass playing friends, here's the audiophile version of Paul Chambers debut, featuring his groundbreaking (for 1956) arco style, in glorious hybrid SACD-DSD. Kenny Burrell supports on guitar ,with Donald Byrd and John Coltrane, Horace Silver and Philly Joe Jones.
I'll admit,these guys aren't for me,but if you like you guitar to go weedily deedily,it doesn't get much more weedily or deedily than this live album. Enjoy at your peril.