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Matthew D. Guarnere — M.D.G.
(What’s Real WRCD 1132, 2001, CD)

by Peter Thelen, Published 2002-09-01

M.D.G. Cover art

Guarnere is a singer, composer and multi-instrumentalist operating in areas between classic and progressive rock. Playing most of the instruments himself, he brings in other players on bass, lead guitar, and keyboards as required to get the job done, and in doing so has produced a first rate collection of rock songs with catchy rhythms and melodic hooks. The disc contains six tracks of music (26 minutes – four songs and two remixes), plus a seventh track that is essentially a 26-minute interview. Obvious influences would include Todd Rundgren, 10cc, Queen, and Cheap Trick, operating in that same polished 70s power-prog mode that connects a strong hook and a degree of complexity to the power chords, bombast, and front-and-center vocals that trademarked some of the best radio rock of that decade. The last half of the disc, however, is that lengthy interview that frankly gets a bit boring after the second play through. Why do artists do this? I suppose that one could program it out… At any rate, Guarnere could be comparable to Spock’s Beard and other modern proponents of the retro-sound, creating a synthesis of vaguely recognizable styles without doing any direct quotes or rips. And likewise, fans of Spock’s Beard should find plenty here of interest. But where’s the full length album?


Filed under: New releases, Issue 25, 2001 releases

Related artist(s): Matthew D. Guarnere

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