If the thought of indulging another instrumental album by some virtuoso guitarist wiggling and twiddling his way up and down the fret board, and aspiring to be the next Yngwie, makes you cringe, then I offer LoNero. They are the self-proclaimed authors of a new genre they call 'guitarcore.' Don't laugh, and certainly don't cringe once more. There is nothing 'hardcore' about what LoNero performs on their second release J.F.L. (Just F*cking Listen).
Certainly, interest can be in the principal Bill Lonero who handles lead, harmony, and rhythm guitar, and he's a damn fine guitar player. But LoNero attempts to put the true emphasis on the song itself. LoNero desires pull you in with strong melodic lines and big hooks in mostly compact compositions. Yes you here Lonero's sizzling guitar work, but also the rhythm, groove, verse and chorus. That's scary, when most instrumental guitar-focused recordings are usually endless solos.
J.F.L. begins with some seriously heavy music with Eden and Little Bastard, both well-paced hard rock numbers with a metal edge. Fat Tat turns on a more rock 'n roll, but it's also edgy like the previous numbers and quite fast. It may remind you of an instrumental Ramones, but with actual guitar solos. Oblivion offers soaring, even bombastic, heavy metal not unlike some of those Italian power metal bands. Following a throw away segue, LoNero opts to tone things down. Downside, New Song, and Good Luck revolve around more melodic rock, sometimes with a metal edge, but obviously lighter. New Song and Good Luck offer some fine bass performances from Mike McKaigg. The album rounds out with a return to the heavier stuff. But after what you just heard, its not all that compelling.
Whether you're willing to accept their new genre of 'guitarcore' or not, on J.F.L. LoNero strikes a different chord (pardon the pun) against traditional guitar-centered instrumental albums. J.F.L. is lively, melodic, and a fine twist upon convention. But is it enough to attract those who would normally pass over instrumental albums? I wonder. Recommended.
Whether you're willing to accept their new genre of 'guitarcore' or not, on J.F.L. LoNero strikes a different chord (pardon the pun) against traditional guitar-centered instrumental albums. J.F.L. is lively, melodic, and a fine twist upon convention.
Mat Sinner is both an icon and legend in the German, and the larger European, hard rock and heavy metal scene. Cranking out music since 1982, Sinner is an industrious and prolific musician and producer whether through his namesake band, the heavy metal heroes Primal ... [ Read More ]