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Engerhardt, Toulouse: Toulousology- Definitive Guitar Soli 1976-2009

Under this quite 70- ish looking cover art are found a nice series of mostly acoustic tunes that were written by Mr. Engelhardt except for a few. One of them being a Jimi Hendrix cover called: "Third Stone from the Sun".

This compilation is an entirely instrumental body of music and the accent is highly on the acoustic guitar instruments. Toulouse uses mainly a twelve strings with occasional classical guitar. He is more than competent with both and his mastery of the strings is undeniable. I must say though that during the very fast parts, the clarity and note separation is suffering somewhat. It might get on the nerves of those fanatics that requires clarity and details or the ones trying to learn those parts (good luck by the way), but for the majority of us, it is just a minor annoyance. The majority of this work is done by finger-picking, adding to the complexity and harmonies being composed for our listening pleasure of course. What makes this compilation even more enjoyable is the variety of styles being offered. You can hear some country tunes, classical ones, more experimental moments as well as an ambient track. "Pressed Ham" is being played on electric (Strat maybe) axe and is some kind of a comical country number. Opening (and closing) track is a very fast number showing how talented this musician is; especially the closing being a live version of the opener. "Blind Watchmaker" is highly reminiscent to something ELP would have written and contains a classical feel. More classical tones can be heard on: "Xel-Ha…Where the Waters are Born", "Melting Stars…Breathing Heavens" and "Air to the Quiver of Angel Wings". You can feel some Zeppelin inspiration on "Revelations at Lunada Bay"; while "Toullusions of Anji" has a definite bluesy vibe.

The good thing about music and reviewing music is that you can always discover a new (to our ears) talent and this gentleman by the name of Toulouse Engelhardt is surely one of them.

Track listing:
1- Fire in O'Doodlee's Popcorn Factory
2- Blind Watchmaker
3- Revelation at Lunada Bay
4- "Toullousions" of Anjil
5- Young Goodman Brown joined the Confederacy Today
6- Xel-Ha…Where the Waters are Born"
7- Let the River Answer
8- Deep River
9- Pressed Ham
10- Beavers in a Hot Tub!
11- Autopia
12- Melting Stars…Breathing Heavens
13- Albert's Gyroscope
14- Air to the Quiver of Angel Wings
15- Third Stone from the Sun
16- Lavender Ascension
17- Fire in O'Doodlee's Popcorn Factory live

Added: August 29th 2012
Reviewer: Denis Brunelle
Related Link: Artist Website
Hits: 1670
Language: english

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Engerhardt, Toulouse: Toulousology- Definitive Guitar Soli 1976-2009
Posted by Michael Popke, SoT Staff Writer on 2012-08-29 20:46:09
My Score:

I've lived in and around Milwaukee for years, and I've always taken an interest in musicians from the area who move on to greater renown. While Les Paul (who hailed from Waukesha, just west of Milwaukee) and Daryl Stuermer still take up much of the spotlight reserved for Brew City guitarists, another player deserves some attention. And Milwaukee-born Toulouse Engelhardt gets it on this career-spanning anthology.

Engelhardt's finger-picking style is distinct, and these 17 mostly solo acoustic guitar pieces are culled from three albums (Toullusions, Martian Lust and Perpendicular Worlds) released between 1976 and 2009, and one live song recorded in California in 2010. There is a distinct old-school vibe to the man's melodic style – whether playing jazz or classical guitar. Cool song titles such as "Fire in O'Doodlee's Popcorn Factory," "Blind Watchmaker" and "Melting Stars … Breathing Heavens" enhance the listening experience and endear newcomers to the guitarist.

Engelhardt, now 61 years old, will never be as famous as Paul and Stuermer, but this collection seeks to do him justice. It could easily have been expanded to two or three or even four CDs, though, given Engelhardt's body of work. As it is, the running time of Toulousology is a disappointing 49-and-a-half minutes.

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