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OTR (On The Rocks): Mamonama
Melodic Rock/Progressive Rock
Rating: 4.75/5.0

Now for something completely different, creative and unique: OTR aka On The Rocks. OTR is former Uriah Heep vocalist John Lawton and former Focus guitarist Jan Dumee backed up by a very talented and tight Brazilian rhythm section featuring Xande Figueiredo (Drums), Ney Conceicao (Bass), and Marvio Ciribelli (Keyboards). This collaboration yields some terrific melodic and progressive rock fusing blues, jazz, and much more.

Mr. Lawton has never sounded better: his voice is passionate, strong and soulful. He is simply stunning on the opener 'Ghetto,' 'Hello Dona Nobis Pacem,' and 'Steal The Night.' Dumee shows his own brilliance exploring his guitar with equal passion and ingenuity as on the aforementioned 'Steal The Night,' but also on 'Taking You Down' and 'Mamonama.' Words cannot express the strength and steadiness of the rhythm section; most bands would kill for such precision. Listen for Conceicao's bass work on 'Face To Face,' simply outstanding. Marvio Ciribelli also deserves special recognition for his superb keyboard as on 'Ghetto' and 'Mamonama.' All these songs are incredibly creative and enjoyable as is the whole of 'Mamonama.' The real ear pleasers for me were 'Ghetto,' wildly different, 'The Corner Club,' melodic and just plain fun,' and the beautifully soulful, 'Shine.' If there was any bump in the road, it was with 'Woman' which really did not capture my interest. But considering the strength of the surrounding material, this is hardly significant.

Frankly readers, it doesn't get much better than OTR for a classic rock sound made fresh and, more importantly, significant for a new day. 'Mamonama' is a complete and satisfying work that deserves your immediate attention. Highly recommended!
- Craig Hartranft

In Short

It doesn't get much better than OTR for a classic rock sound made fresh and, more importantly, significant for a new day. 'Mamonama' is a complete and satisfying work that deserves your immediate attention.

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