This new release titled Figli Di Baia, signifies the Italian town and birthplace of lead guitarist John Pelosi’s parents, as “The Code” combines contemporary - lead guitar driven musings with solid backbeats, a few tricky time signatures, percussion, electro-acoustic keys and lyric-less vocals. Throughout, Pelosi steers the group through a hodgepodge of fragmented unison choruses, shifting tempos and well stated choruses, witnessed on pieces such as “Fake Paradise”, “As If” and others.
Percussionist Paul Christopher Caldeira also injects his wordless vocals into the affable composition, “Invisible Cities” and the piece titled “Maria’s Grace” which is somewhat reminiscent of guitarist Pat Metheny’s mid to late 80’s hugely popular Brazilian influenced sound. However, some of these tracks represent little more than polished, groove orientated affairs featuring Pelosi’s penetrating, emotive leads and keyboardist Richard Evans’ jazzy soloing and multihued implementation of synth backwashes as the rhythm section generally maintains the straightforward backbeats amid a few slick tempo changes.
Although, the musicians do indeed possess solid chops, some of this material does not sustain long-term interest despite the lead soloist’s liberal injections of melodic choruses and airy chord voicings in concert with commendable support from the rhythm section. Essentially, the band performs with a noticeable degree of ebullience and the crystalline recording does enhance some of the nuances and intricacies; otherwise, this outfit does have a great deal of potential when viewed as a whole!
* * * (out of * * * * *)
John Pelosi; guitars, synth guitar: Richard Evans; keyboards: Patrick Kilbride; bass: Paul DeLong; drums: Paul Christopher Caldeira; vocals & percussion: Armando Borg; percussion: Marco Luciani; synth solo on