There are many good guitarists out there. In fact, there are many very good guitarists out there. Not all of them make it, thank heavens, or else I'd be broke for wanting to buy their albums. Even so, of those many very good guitar players there are preciously few who can write a song to save their lives.

Neil Rambaldi is a very good guitar player who can write a song to save his life. Apart from that, he masters a variety of playing styles (not just shred and neoclassical), he plays keyboards, he can produce, and he does some of the most natural sounding drum programming I've heard in a long while. All of this can be admired on his independently released full length debut, "Perpetual Horizon". The album showcases his diversity and versatility, with enough presence of cool chops to let the guitar afficionado drool from a selection of various orifices.

The eleven tracks on this album aren't mere guitar wanking, though. Most of them are actually well written, and though it's evident that Neil Rambaldi is a guitar player first and foremost, his songs aren't constant 1000-mile-an-hour solo pieces. "Speechless" and "It's Time" show a more sensitive side to his playing, the latter partly acoustic. "Deja Vu" is a Flamenco style track, and "Edge" kicks off with a Dick Dale style surf intro. There's also plain, dark-sounding, good rock, such as on "Against the Grain" and "Prowl" in particular. Melody is prevalent in most tracks, but especially in "Personalities", which shows a Satch side to his playing. The title track a.k.a. album closer is a bit of a prog rock tour de force, a very good last impression.

This album is much worth checking out. Because it's independently released, it's not very easy to get, so do check out his web site (URL below) for more information.



Written August 2003


Go to the Official Neil Rambaldi site

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