[ KEY REVIEWS | SHORT REVIEWS | DETAILED REVIEWS
Tracklist: 1. Stealth 2. For the Friend 3. Days In Stockholm 4. Hand Surgery 5. Big Joe's Jam 6. And They Become Gods 7. Get Up & Play 8. Bassball 9. Serious Damage All music: by P. Karys. Line-up: Pete Karys - electric & acoustic guitars Rich Spillberg - bass guitar; drum programmind Guest musician: Dave Alexander - keyboards (on 8) Produced, recorded, & mixed by John Burn R. Spillberg at "Baked Bean" studio, Malden, MA. Mastered by Hank Kocistra at "West".
Prologue. "Just a Taste" is the debut album by this duo. Before, Pete Karys was a Solo Pilot, while Rich Spillberg played in the band Wargasm, which was well known in the camp of Thrash-Metal. Originally, this album was released by Peter's own label 'Karys Music' in 2000.
The Album. What a wonderful album! It presents nothing else but another unique manifestation of Classical Academic Music, performed by a very serious Prog-Metal band. Thanks to the proper use of overdubs, "Just a Taste" has quite a polyphonic sound. For the Friend, Days In Stockholm, Big Joe's Jam, Get Up & Play, and Serious Damage (tracks 2, 3, 5, 7, & 9) are structurally similar among themselves. For the most part, each of them consists of up-tempo, high-speed, and machine-gun fire like arrangements, made-up on basis of very diverse and contrasting interplay between a few of the different and contrasting solos of electric and bass guitars. Only to have an idea what many of Peter's solos are about, those of you, who are acquainted at least with the most popular works of Classical Academic Music, can recall The Flight of Bumblebee and Sabre Dance by Aram Khachaturyan, Dance of the Headless Chickens by Modest Mussorgsky, etc. All three of these pieces are in the repertoire of such famous Prog-Metal bands as Mekong Delta, Skyclad, to name a few. To be objective, bassist Rich Spillberg is also an incredibly virtuosi musician. Apart from the completely 'electric' arrangements, each of Stealth and Hand Surgery (1 & 4) contains also the mid-tempo passages of classical guitar that are just wonderfully interwoven in interplay between the high-speed solos of electric and bass guitars. On Hand Surgery, these unique arrangements cover no less than one third of its length. Can you recall Steve Howe's Mood For a Day from Yes's "Fragile" album and the other acoustic guitar pieces by this maestro? And They Become Gods (6) consists entirely of acoustic passages as well. Until now, however, I've never heard such a virtuosi play on a classical guitar as Peter's on this composition. And They Become Gods is a piece of Classical Academic Music, which was performed on an acoustic guitar. The music that is featured on the first half of Bassball (8) represents kind of Classical Music for Bass Guitars (a few parts of bass are just overdubbed). The same sort of music, consisting of interplay between the fast solos of bass and organ and accompanied by the (excellently) programmed drums, is present on the second half of it. A drum machine was programmed in a full concordance with all the changes of tone and mood (etc) that have ever happened on the album.
Summary. All the compositions that are featured on "Just a Taste" are truly thought-out. The arrangements, some of which are even more eclectic than those of a traditional Classical Music, develop constantly throughout each of them, and there aren't repeats on this album. So it comes highly recommended to those who comprehend such masterworks of 'Metallic' Classical Music as "Upstairs" (2001) by Azazello, "Dances of Death" (1990) and a few other albums by Mekong Delta or just love a highly complex Prog-Metal in general.
VM. May 15, 2002
"Fossil Records" web-site:
You can also order the CD directly from Pete Karys via e-mail to: email@example.com
[ KEY REVIEWS | SHORT REVIEWS | DETAILED REVIEWS - LIST | BANDLISTS ]