Exposé Online banner

Allan Holdsworth — Flat Tire - Music for a Non-Existent Movie
(Moonjune MJR053, 2001/2013, CD)

by Jon Davis, Published 2013-08-22

Flat Tire - Music for a Non-Existent Movie Cover artIt's safe to say that Allan Holdsworth's credentials are in order. In circles where guitarists are discussed for contributions to the state of the art, his name is sure to come up. And it's a pretty safe assumption that any release of his is going to have some tasty guitar work — or is it? Judging a Holdsworth album usually comes down to the quality of the compositions and the appeal of the setting for the guitar. This one, however, finds Holdsworth mostly on his own, replacing guitar with synthaxe, which serves to trigger keyboard sounds and percussion (guitar appears on a single track). Special guest Dave Carpenter contributes acoustic bass on two tracks, but aside from that, this "Music for a Non-Existent Movie" is a one-man show. The "keyboard" sounds used mostly fall in the flute-like realm, the ethereal string realm, and what sounds vaguely like an electric piano; the chords used are all very interesting and sophisticated but highly artificial sounding. The lead lines take on a variety of synth tones, sometimes clarinet-like, sometimes more brassy, but always featuring that wild fluidity Holdsworth is known for. So what is the value of an album by a great guitarist that features virtually no guitar? For some listeners, the answer might be "virtually none." Certainly, don't buy this expecting to hear classic Holdsworth. But if you like unexpected, wandering chord progressions and noodly melodies and don't mind the sound of digital percussion, there might be sounds here to enjoy. Still, I can't help thinking that "Snow Moon" would totally rip if he played that insane solo on guitar and it was a full band backing him instead of chaotic electronic percussion and digital chords.

Filed under: Reissues, 2013 releases, 2001 recordings

Related artist(s): Allan Holdsworth

Latest news

2017-05-19
First ProgStock Festival Set for October – October 2017 will see the inaugural edition of a festival called ProgStock in Rahway, New Jersey at the Union County Performing Arts Center. With a definite slant towards neo-progressive music, the event is sure to please many fans with the inclusion of such artists as Echolyn, Glass Hammer, and Aisles. The festival will take place October 13-15. » Read more

2017-05-05
Clive Brooks RIP – Word reaches us today of another sad passing in the music world. Drummer Clive Brooks, best known as a member of such Canterbury bands as Egg, Uriel / Arzachel, and Groundhogs, has died at the age of 67. Details are sketchy at this point. The news was reported on Nick Mason's Facebook page — Brooks was Mason's drum tech. » Read more

2017-05-02
Col. Bruce Hampton RIP – The phrase "He died doing what he loved" is almost a cliche, but in the case of Col. Bruce Hampton, it couldn't be more true. Hampton, who was born Gustav Berglund III, collapsed on stage at his own 70th birthday celebration and later passed away. The event took place at the Fox Theater in Atlanta. » Read more

2017-04-16
ProgDay 2017 Announces First Bands – Flor de Loto, Sonar, and Infinien are the first three performers to be announced for the 2017 edition of the long-running ProgDay Festival. The 23rd ProgDay takes place Saturday and Sunday, September 2nd and 3rd, at Storybook Farm in Chapel Hill, North Carolina. » Read more

2017-04-16
Allan Holdsworth RIP – Surely in the list of artists who have contributed to the sound of modern music, there is a special spot for guitarist Allan Holdsworth. His name is known to virtually every student of the instrument in jazz and rock, and his style has been so widely emulated that it's hardly worth mentioning anymore — we can just assume that every guitarist has Holdsworth as an influence. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Symphorce - Godspeed – Both symphonic and forceful, Symphorce is a German power metal quintet with double guitar, bass, drums, and a singer. Their compositions follow a fairly typical verse-chorus structure, and stay...  (2006) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues