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Non-Prog CD Reviews

Joe Olnick

Up All Night

Review by Gary Hill

Joe Olnick plays everything here except the drums. That task falls to Christopher Loser. The music here ranges from jam band to fusion and more. An instrumental album this focused on guitar can have a tendency toward being monolithic. For the most part, Olnick really avoids that. Near the end, it does start to feel a bit samey, but even then it’s only minor. All in all, this is an entertaining set for those who enjoy melodic instrumental guitar based music.

This review is available in book format (hardcover and paperback) in Music Street Journal: 2014  Volume 5 at lulu.com/strangesound.

Track by Track Review
Dire

Melodic guitar sounds drive this piece. It has sort of a jam band rock and roll vibe to it.

Swamp Funk
Combine a Terrapin Station Grateful Dead kind of sound with some fusion and you’ll have a good idea of what this is about.
Voices in the Stream
I like the rocking sounds of this a lot. There is a real soaring, reaching kind of melodic element here.
After Hours
This is much more of a jazz trio kind of piece. It’s got a great groove to it.
Tall Tales
Rock and roll, jam band and fusion sounds are mixed together on this killer rocking piece. It has a great groove and some killer musical moments. The melodic guitar soloing on this number is particularly effective.
Beach House
Funky fusion is the musical concept on this number. It turns towards space music and jam band sounds as it continues, though.
Main Drag on a Saturday Night

Here we get more of that jam band kind of sound. This reminds me of a more stripped down Traffic for some reason.

Regeneration
The Grateful Dead, the Allman Brothers and more seem to merge on this number. It’s a slowly evolving tune that’s massive in size. While nothing here changes fast, it changes quite a bit throughout the duration of the cut. Eventually it works out to more of a hard rock based jam.
Red Tablecloth
The jazz and jam band sounds merge on this number. It’s a classy and tasty one.
Banks of the Muddy River
I love the slide guitar on this piece. It’s a slow moving, down home kind of piece. Yet, in some ways it makes me think of David Gilmour, too.

 

 
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