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Rafart: The Handbook of the Acid Rider

Francisco Rafart is a Chilean musician specializing in the Chapman Stick. The Handbook of the Acid Rider is his debut album. Besides Stick, Rafart adds synths and sequences and is joined by Pablo Martinez (drums), Fernando Daza (guitars) and Rodrigo Morel (guitars).

This is instrumental progressive rock and fusion played with a high degree of skill and aplomb. What is even more impressive are the outstanding melodies found throughout. Rafart's melodic sensibilities come through in almost every track and his Chapman Stick leads the way. Even better is his ability to stay away from the typical million notes a minute wankery we so often hear and place a strong emphasis in songwriting.

The first track "Axis Mundi" begins with ambient like electronic textures, dreamy effects and an overall lush sound before crisp percussion enters and a solid slice of melodic progressive fusion unfolds. Rafart's Stick playing is excellent with a strong melodic sensibility. The beginning of "Drum n' Space" leans toward electronica and as the song develops Rafart's melodic Stick lines weave impressively through the soundscape making for another memorable moment. "Blauen" is more mellow with pretty guitar arpeggios whereas "Chironex Fleckeri" is another prog fusion piece with nice changes of pace, soaring guitar and interesting rhythms. The short "Mozzarella" features more impressive solo Stick and segues directly into "Space Rat" featuring spacey electronic effects, tasty guitar and an addictive repeating melody performed on the Stick.

The Handbook of the Acid Rider will certainly appeal to fans of the Chapman Stick as well as prog fusion. If you enjoy earworms with your prog be sure to check this one out.

Track Listing:
1. Axis Mundi
2. Drum n' Space
3. Blauen
4. Pepperoni Atmosphere
5. Chironex Fleckeri
6. Mozzarella
7. Space Rat
8. Masacre
9. Escom Brock
10. Sake & Mote
11. Alpha (Bonus Track)

Added: March 2nd 2014
Reviewer: Jon Neudorf
Related Link: Artist's Facebook Page
Hits: 2118
Language: english

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