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(36:33, Musea Parallele Records)
TRACK LIST: 1. Atomic Notion 5:00 2. Occidental Sky 6:38 3. Parid France 6:36 4. Guitar Dreams 7:13 5. Nightmares of War 5:00 6. These Girls Love Me 6:06 SOLO PILOT: Eddy Grandjean – guitars, bass; keyboards; programming
Prolusion. Eddy GRANDJEAN is a French multi-instrumentalist, with skills both self-taught as well as learnt at the international music academy in Nancy, France. Unless there are other musicians with the same name around, he also has a background as a drummer from the death metal band Sarcastic Existence. "Eddiologie Part One" is Grandjean's first solo release, and was issued in March 2008.
Analysis. Musea Records is somewhat of an institution in France as well as in progressive rock circles, its name being for many synonymous with experimental music, most often of the progressive variant. And in that respect this release is somewhat of a surprise, as the music explored by Grandjean hardly can be said to be progressive in nature, despite some tunes containing progressive elements. In short, "Eddiologie Part One" is a guitar god album – an instrumental creation where the electric guitar is the central and dominant instrument, and the style explored has a solid foundation in metal and hard rock – with more of the former than the latter. Atomic Notion kicks off with some really catchy grooves, with Grandjean's somewhat unique guitar soloing dominating the tune, sounding somewhat like a distorted and dampened wah-wah playing style. Breaking up the piece are two keyboard solos, adding variation to the metal grooves. Next up is Occidental Sky, and on this composition we get further explorations of Grandjean's guitar solo sound, contrasted with segments of clean and undistorted soloing towards the end of the tune. Paris France sees him experimenting more with his composition, with multiple guitar layers being the chosen tool, at first utilized for harmonic playing in groovy and majestic metal segments with mellow melodic based parts in between, and then slowly evolving into distorted and at last disharmonic multilayered landscapes, and finally ending on a more melodic note again, with some oriental sounding guitar licks added to the fray. Guitar Dreams starts off with a multilayered performance, but soon evolves into a more basic tune where Grandjean's soloing is highlighted, underscored by a melodic bass line and drums only. Nightmares of War combines the distinct soloing with underscoring by slower, Black Sabbath-inspired, riffs and a slightly faster, galloping bass line sounding like something Steve Harris from Iron Maiden could have played, while the final tune, These Girls Love Me, combines these elements with melodic licks and some mellow parts inserted into the composition. Eddy Grandjean comes across as a skilled performer on all instruments, and he does have a talent for songwriting too, with the first two tunes on this release in particular being energetic and positive sounding tunes. The last four songs aren't that impressive, though. Some of the ideas explored aren't as good, but in most cases it's more a question of over-exploring an idea – at least that is the case for me personally.
Conclusion. Aficionados of instrumental guitar dominated metal should have an interest in this release, if not for anything else than to experience a guitar solo sound which hasn't been explored to death by hundreds of other guitar god wannabes. Grandjean is an able composer and performer in general too, and if an instrumental album of this category is something you like to purchase now and then you can do much worse than buying this particular release.
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