Exposé Online banner

Flyin' Ryan Brothers — Totality
((Not on label) no#, 2008, CD)

by Peter Thelen, Published 2008-10-01

Totality Cover art

Here’s a tasty slice of instrumental progressive guitar rock, borne of the idea that lyrics and voices are unnecessary – and in fact only get in the way of the delivery of a strong enough instrumental message. There are some flashy pyrotechnics here and there, but there is so much more, as the chief component of this quartet’s output is rich and robust melodies delivered in a variety of styles and moods, with a twin guitar attack, supported by bass, drums, keyboards and several other instruments, making for an extremely satisfying whole. The brothers Johnny and Jimmy play all manner of guitars: acoustic, electric, lap steel, flutar, plus sitar, glockenspiel, accordion, and keyboards – even what sound like steel drums and theremin on the adventurous “Cosmic Calypso.” The rhythm section is drummer Johnny Mrozek and Exposé patron saint William Kopecky on four and six string and fretless basses; indeed the bass and drums are integral to the concept, with all four members having a hand in all the compositions and arrangements, which tend to tow the melodic line, steer clear of any overt metalisms, and never get too far beyond grasp. Some reference points might include Eric Johnson, Steve Morse or the Travis Larson Band, but their dual lead guitar approach reminds me most of the best instrumental work of Wishbone Ash. In all, an outstanding offering that satisfies on a number of levels.


Filed under: New releases, Issue 36, 2008 releases

Related artist(s): Flyin' Ryan Brothers

Latest news

2018-01-05
Ray Thomas RIP – On Thursday, 4 January 2017, the world lost Ray Thomas, founding member of the Moody Blues. Thomas sang and played flute, and was responsible for writing a number of the band's most memorable songs. He was 76. » Read more

2017-12-22
Roswell Rudd RIP – Jazz trombonist Roswell Rudd, one of the distinctive players of his instrument in many strains of music, has died at the age of 82. With a career stretching back to the early 60s and over a hundred recordings featuring his playing, he leaves behind a substantial legacy. He was diagnosed with cancer in 2013. » Read more

2017-11-16
Celebrate 10 Years of Fruits de Mer – As a special celebration for a decade of cool vinyl releases, our friends at Fruits de Mer records have prepared a limited edition reissue of an album by the first band ever to appear on the label: Schizo Fun Addict. The band is known for unusual release strag » Read more

2017-11-02
Mega Dodo Presents New Charity Album – Our friends at Mega Dodo have put together a lovely compilation of their artists performing new arrangements of nursery rhymes, and all the profits from sales of the album will benefit Save the Children. It features a number of artists we've covered. » Read more

2017-10-18
Phil Miller RIP – Sad word reaches us today of the passing of another of the great musicians of the Canterbury Scene — guitarist Phil Miller. His distinctive sound added greatly to Matching Mole, Hatfield and the North, and National Health, and he also contributed to albums by Caravan, Dave Stewart & Barbara Gaskin, and many others. He was 68. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Procosmian Fannyfiddlers - Requiem Fatigue – Sweet voices and guitars start off the Procosmian Fannyfiddlers eighth CD, Requiem Fatigue. The band calls their style burlesque progressive rock, and that's pretty accurate. The tales told here are...  (2011) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues