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LoNero: JFL

They call it guitarcore. What I call it is great instrumental guitar driven rock and roll. It is a genre that has few who can do it well but many who try. LoNero has got it right. Instead of showing how many notes can be crammed into a bar of music or delving into what can only be called extended wanking, they remembered that the most important aspect of music is melody.

Kicking off the album is a terrific piece called "Eden" which is just where the guitar lover will think he is after listening to this one. LoNero proves that it is possible to be heavy yet create a melodic song which will appeal to fans of many genres of music. The comparisons to the likes of Satriani are inevitable and these guys do follow some paths that Joe has set down but their trail never strays from making sure that the melody is paramount.

Another aspect of this band is that they will explore whatever field of music they desire. Sometimes you get a heavier feel as with "Little Bastard" or you might get what they call punkstumental on a song like "Good Luck" which is just what their labeling says. It has a punk attitude for the underbelly but still maintains the melody.

Another song that the band says is in the punstrumental category is "Fat Tat". To me this one sounds more like a Gary Hoey surf instrumental. Believe me when I say that this is not a bad thing at all. They manage to keep it heavy but to me I see a surfer riding that big wave when I hear this one. When music can take you to another place like that, it is doing it's job! Not everyone is going to experience the same journey but it is the ability to move you in one way or another that really counts. LoNero will do that and you will love where they take you.

I also like the dramatic side of their music. A song like "Oblivion" sounds to me like something that might come out of the Symphony X camp if Russell Allen didn't show up that day. Intense, powerful music that gets down into the soul.

The many different sides to this band makes this disc a dynamic listening experience. JFL just begs for you to slap it in the car player and head down to the nearest coastline and just cruise. I have been trying to figure out what the name of the album means and after hearing it I think it must be an abbreviation for Just F'ing Listen!!

Track listing:

1. Eden
2. Little Bastard
3. Fat Tat
4. Oblivion
5. Discard
6. Downside
7. New Song
8. Good Luck
9. Giant
10. King Of Damage

Added: June 5th 2011
Reviewer: Scott Ward
Related Link: Band's Official Site
Hits: 4309
Language: english

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» SoT Staff Roundtable Reviews:

LoNero: JFL
Posted by Steven Reid, SoT Staff Writer on 2011-06-04 19:03:30
My Score:

I'm not a fan of the multi genre-tag system rock music has created for itself, so when the second album from guitar driven instrumental act LoNero landed in my home with the proud boast that this band had created "Guitarcore", I have to say that I gave a little inward sigh. So what is guitarcore I hear you ask? Well judging from JFL, the simple(ish) answer to that would appear to be everything from guitar based rock that ranges across melodic rock to punk, as well as metal ranging from the funk variety to the power category. Maybe it is easier to think of Joe Satriani with a slightly wider remit and you won't be far off.

Now all of that immediately describes why I think that with JFL LoNero may have created themselves a double edged sword, because I know that people who will genuinely get a huge amount out of this sharp, well crafted, song based album will have already been put off by the thought of another instrumental based guitar led album. Reviewers can say until they are blue in the face that what LoNero do is different from most shredders or as their work is known "guitar wank" albums, but there's no doubt that it won't be enough to convince those who believe that they need lyrics and vocals to really make an album complete, and that is a real shame. JFL isn't an excuse for musicians to show off and while there can be no doubt that Bill Lonero is a six-string sage, he uses his talent to tell simple musical stories embellished with a little sparkles of colour and simply wonderful tone. Ably backed by Mike McKaigg on bass, Brandon Hayes on rhythm/harmony guitar and Marco Bicca on drums, what LoNero the band do is rock and rock hard!

What is also impressive about JFL is that not only does it not matter one iota that LoNero don't have a singer, but that they manage to do so while creating a wonderfully eclectic, yet cohesive album. "Fat Tat" could be from a long lost Ramones out-take that Satriani found lying around, "Downside" funks things up like The Electric Boys on happy pills, while "Oblivion" dives off into prog-metal territory, but without the overwrought baggage that suggests and "King Of Damage" oozes bluesy class in the manner that Clutch would be proud of. Yes it sounds like a slightly odd mix, but believe me when I say that the songs work both individually and as a cracking album!

Put the preconceptions away and indulge yourself in an instrumental album that has as much, if not more power, emotion and clarity than most of the lyric based acts around. LoNero deserve to be huge, it's up to you to get them there!

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