Canada born Dave Martone has performed and/or recorded with musicians such as Glen Drover (Megadeth), Steve Morse (Deep Purple), Paul Gilbert (solo, Mr Big, Racer X), Mike Portnoy (Dream Theatre, Transatlantic), Gene Hoglan (Dark Angel, Death) and others. Doubtlessly he’s an exceptionally talented guitarist. That’s why “Nascimiento” seems like an odd album to make.
Martone here casts the electric guitar aside in favour of a nylon-stringed acoustic guitar. The tracks all have a Spanish/Flamenco vibe as recurring theme, whether instrinsically or through their adaptations. Most are covers of traditional tunes unearthed from the 1960s and 1970s. Think of “Nascimiento” as a modernised José Feliciano or Tommy Emmanuel.
Dave Martone proves to be quite agile with the acoustic guitar and his interpretative skills are remarkable. Yet you get the feeling that he was short of inspiration for this album.
Some numbers are inspired by film soundtracks. For example ‘Spider-Man’ recalls the cartoon series of the same name that brightened up many TV rooms decades ago. There’s also ‘Theme From Rocky’ from the 1976 film which, truth be told, I found a tad pointless.
It’s certainly not all doom and gloom. ‘Rasputin’, originally recorded by the disco-era Boney M, is given quite a catchy and fun make-over. Some synthetic percussion sounds only serve to augment the song’s appeal. The Shadows’ ‘Classical Gas’ is another one which I liked and ‘Hola’ has some impressive acoustic guitar shredding.
Bottom line…this is an occasionally boring album with a suspiciously mainstream appeal but containing some well-executed songs.
- 11 11 11
- The Godfather
- Dream On
- Maria Elena
- Classical Gas
- Theme from Rocky
- The Final Countdown
Label: Magnatude Records