Bill Berends — In My Dreams I Can Fly
((Not on label) , 2012, CD)
by Peter Thelen, Published 2014-02-17At hand is something of a calling card, a selection of compositions for electric guitar that showcase what the guitarist can do in a solo context, who has up until this point always been associated with his band Mastermind. Launching the album of twelve instrumentals with the surf-beat title track, it doesn’t take long to realize this is something entirely new, and not another album by his band. Drummer Jason Gianni (from the Neal Morse band) joins Berends, who plays all other instruments – multiple guitars and bass primarily with an ear toward a strong melodic composition in a variety of rock based styles. If one enjoyed the late-60s work of Eric Clapton, “Heavy Cream” seems to be a tribute to that bluesy rock style. One might also hear stylistic echoes of Jeff Beck, Richie Blackmore’s more melodic side, Ronnie Montrose, Steve Morse, Harvey Mandel, Dickey Betts, and other classic guitar slingers from the past throughout these twelve cuts, but nowhere is any of this derivative, as Berends has a solid command of his compositional chops. After five cuts of pretty much straight-up rock the listener is treated to “In a Quiet Place,” a slower paced, beautiful melodic piece that is one of the album’s standouts. But there are many more standouts throughout this style-shifting smorgasbord of classic rock, every moment of which is thoroughly enjoyable. “The Longest Winter” is not only the disc’s longest track, but a moody, introspective melodic piece that evolves slowly and erupts into a powerful and memorable refrain at several points during its seven minutes and change. All said, this is a set that should please any fan of classic instrumental guitar rock.
Related artist(s): Bill Berends
Tomasz Stańko RIP – Tomasz Stańko, one of the greats of Eastern European jazz, has died at the age of 76. Stańko's career started in Krzysztof Komeda's quintet, where he contributed trumpet from 1963-1967, when he formed his own group. He worked extensively with Edward Vesala, Don Cherry, Zbigniew Seifert, Chico Freeman, Howard Johnson, Cecil Taylor, and many others. Many of his recordings have been released by ECM, an association that began in the mid-70s. » Read more
Soft Machine Set to Release New Music – It's been 50 years since The Soft Machine changed the face of music with their first album. Their blend of psychedelic rock and jazz was unique, and while the band went through many changes before disbanding in 1981 — by which time there were no original members remaining — they remained an innovative force with a style all their own. » Read more
7d Surfaces Happy Rhodes Back Catalog – We've covered singer Happy Rhodes before, both for her solo work and recently with The Security Project, but her 11 albums have been hard to track down. Until now. 7d features high-quality downloads of all her releases, and several of them are also available on CD. » Read more
Fred Chalenor RIP – We have news of another sad passing in the world of creative music. Bassist Fred Chalenor, whose creativity featured on albums by Tone Dogs, Caveman Shoestore, and many more, died on June 23, 2018 after a long battle with Alzheimer's. Tributes have poured in from the many musicians and fans whose lives he touched. » Read more