Rocket Scientists – Refuel

Rocket Scientists – Refuel
Think Tank Media
It has been seven years since the last full-length CD by the Rocket Scientists. They gave us a tasty little snack earlier this year with “Supernatural Highways,” but to now say that not only was the wait well worth it and that the new release “Refuel” is a veritable feast of delectable prog rock flavors is not in the very least cliche or hyperbolic, because it is so true. The founding trio of keyboard maestro Erik Norlander, proficiently talented guitarist/vocalist Mark McCrite, and NS/Chapman stick/bass wizard Don Schiff brings their A+ game here, evident in both the songwriting and the musical prowess on display. The title track which is also the lead track explodes with tempered power, a perfect instrumental appetizer for what is to come. “She’s Getting Hysterical,” the first single off the CD has a hooky quality interspersed with edgier passages, with slightly tongue-in-cheek lyrics and wonderful vocals by Mark. “Martial” has a haunting vibe with pulsing rhythms highlighting Don’s talents, while “The World Waits For You” is a mesmerizing and musically intricate ballad. “Galilieo” is space rock at its pinnacle, something Erik has always been highly adept at creating. “It’s Over/Regenerate” is perhaps a microcosm of the astounding capabilities of this band with multiple musical twists and turns that leave you in rapt anticipation of what is around the next bend. Several noted guests add to the flavor of the CD including Erik’s wife – prog “diva” Lana Lane; drummer extraordinaire Gregg Bissonette; and vocal powerhouse Kelly Keeling who lends his skills to the horn section graced “Cheshire Cat Smile.” Rocket Scientists have on every occasion of recording projects proved that they deserve to be mentioned in the same breath as highly regarded prog rock acts such as Spock’s Beard, Dream Theater, and Porcupine Tree. This band has paid their dues and definitely has the talent to back that statement with this highly anticipated new release.   – MW


Dominic Gaudious – The Dominic Didgeridoo Express

Dominic Gaudious – The Dominic Didgeridoo Express
Dominic Gaudious has established himself over the years as being a highly talented and eclectic musician, known for his guitar prowess ranging from new age to rock and about every main drag and side road in between. Dominic is also very well-versed in playing the exotic Australian didgeridoo, often playing both the “didge” and guitar at the same time. While this latest release is not the first time Dominic has brought the didge to a higher prominence in one of his recordings, he does push the songwriting envelope even further here than he has done in the past. “Wild Man” for example has some absolutely smoking guitar riffs interspersed with various tonal pyrotechnics on the didge. Dominic delves into various world music in songs such as “Italy To France,” “Rubber Tree”  and “Northern Territory” although other world embellishments subtly appear in many of the songs. There is definitely a more rock vibe that permeates this recording as well, from the psychedelic touches in “Hippie Dance Music” to the gritty drive of “Adrenal Fatigue.” Despite Dominic mostly being known for instrumental work, the CD includes vocal songs with Michelle Amato from Yanni and Kelly Keeling from the band Baton Rouge, two noted guests who have contributed their talents. The guest list does not stop there however. Legendary session drummer Gregg Bissonette drives the beats on most of the tracks, with Stu Hamm (Joe Satriani), Dave Weiner (Steve Vai), and Tony Franklin (The Firm) all lending their prodigious musicianship on many of the tunes as well. Dominic shows us something more with this CD drawn his deep pool of talents. This is a recording created by someone with an extreme passion for music who loves what he is doing right now – a gift to his loyal fans and a refreshing new experience to those who may not be familiar with the musical talent of Dominic Gaudious.  – MW

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