Paul Gilbert "Vibrato" cd review.
Music Theories Recordings, a division of Mascot Label Group,release on the 15th of October Paul Gilbert’s 12th solo album “Vibrato”.
The album includes four new guitar and vocal compositions, four instrumentals, plus three live cover songs from Gilbert’s 2010 “Fuzz” tour.
Ably backed in the studio by his wife Emi on keys and vocals,Kelly LeMieux on bass and the quite brilliant Thomas Lang on drums they have produced an album that needs listening to and with every listen you find something else.
“Enemies In Jail”leads off with a track that combines blues,jazz and hard rock with Paul on vocals and the rhythm section just killing.
“Rain and Thunder and Lightning”is the first instrumental and has more time changes than any prog song with again some wonderful drumming and bass and also includes a lengthy keys solo which shows that Paul isn’t the only world class musician in the family.
The funky title track “Vibrato”has some stunning guitar solo’s and again the song is led by Thomas Lang’s drumming which takes it to another level.
The fantastic production on all the tracks is credit to Paul and lets every instrument take centre stage and not just the guitar.
“Put It On The Char”is another instrumental again led by the urgent drumming patterns of Thomas with all the other instruments feeding off his lead.A Hammond organ solo is at the heart of the song too.This song would be a blast live with the wailing solo showing how inventive Paul can be.
“Bivalve Blues” does what it says on the tin with Paul’s elegant soloing being to the fore. His vocals and lead playing off each other with the drums,bass and keys taking a back seat and just laying down a beat.Brilliant.
A cover of Dave Brubeck’s “Blue Rondo A La Turk”is a high tempo number after the slowing down of the last song.With again some wonderful interplay from Paul,Emi’s keys and Thomas’s drum patterns.
“Atmosphere On The Moon”is my favourite track on the cd with it’s bluesy jazz tones with Paul and some great backing vocal’s being the focal point of the song.Huge chorus.
A wonderful melodic guitar solo takes it to new heights for a song designed to be played on a summer’s night!!
“The Pronghorn”is the final instrumental with all instruments getting their time at the front in this jazzy free flowing song.
The final 3 songs are from the live shows in 2010 which had Tony Spinner on guitar and vocals,Craig Martin on bass and Jeff Bowders on drums.
Kicking with Yes’s “Roundabout” it again showcases Paul’s love of different rhythm’s and time changes.He really does enjoy getting the best out of himself but everyone else he plays with too!!
Muddy Waters’s “I Want To Be Loved”is lovingly recreated with its bluesy tones and Paul’s guitar solo to the fore.
Finishing with a romp through what the band call “the best song in the world” AC/DC’s “Go Down” with Paul doing his best Angus impression it’s a great way to finish the cd.
It’s so good to see a world class player not just playing for himself.
This cd is all the better for letting the songs,instruments and all the other musicians come to the fore.
A wonderful cd that deserves to be heard for what it is.
A diverse musical tour de force and not just a guitarist showing off!!