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March 2005

Glenn Astarita By

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2005

Impacting and shifty progressive rock outing by a power trio intent upon offering something with a twist while deriving a few elements from the old school. Guitarist Glenn Snelwar's multidimensional attack is awash with astutely concocted harmonic developments and tricky unison runs with bassist Michael Manring. Drummer Mark Zonder locks in rather snugly with his musical companions' often-complex iterations. They temper the flow on occasion. And at times the trio's modus operandi parallels the abstract CD cover depiction of a human's head entangled in knotted ropes. There's definitely a consistent thematic element that purveys during the conceptual connotations perpetuated here.

Pablo Menéndez

Havana Blues Mambo

Zoho Music

2005

California resident and Cuban-born guitarist Pablo Menéndez bridges the gap between vibrant, easily attainable Afro-Cuban jazz and steamy jazz-fusion. The guitarist is also a supreme melody maker, whether he is slamming the EFX pedal to the metal or rendering wistful chord voicings. His debut release for this record label is a hands-down winner as various mood-drenched motifs seemingly intersect in near flawless fashion.

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