Django Lumiere had a couple of failed attempts at playing lead guitar in bands before he decided to go at it alone. He recorded, mixed and mastered his self-titled album Django Lumiere, which contains some incredible guitar work. I’m not impressed by a guitarist like Joe Satriani who can shred like no one’s business but who seem to lack any understanding of aesthetics. A lot of these virtuosos seem to think that their technical ability is enough for people to get excited about which does work for some people. Luckily, Lumiere displays his technical skills but also has enough of an ear to write songs that are aesthetically pleasing as well. The album contains 11 instrumental songs that are varied enough to keep your attention. The center piece on every song is the guitar but it’s how its played and in what style is what has you anticipating the next track. Take for example “Arbitrary” where his electric guitar work reminded me a bit of J Mascis lead guitar playing while “Aramistorias” contains beautiful acoustic picking that is more akin to a flamenco style,
The album starts out with a hard-hitting number called “Bullet Ridden Entrance.” The drums are low- fi as if they have been recorded with one mic and severely compressed. The song hits a number of different styles notably even a Primal Scream type bass riff that momentarily sounds like a dance song. It is a solid song to start off the album that displays his ability to draw from a number of different styles. “The Sorocco Sequence” is a good follow-up that layers warm acoustic guitar chord progressions on top of a lead part that gave it this mariachi type of feel. “Soubriquet” was one of the highlights for me. The song was very well rounded and I was getting immersed into the song as a whole rather than just having my focus on the guitars, which sometimes happened on the previous songs. The beginning guitar riff on “The Distance Between” is so good. It is so good in fact that I would have been perfectly fine just listening to that the whole time. When the loud drums and bass enter it is almost too much. After a couple of seconds though Lumiere starts to find his groove and then it starts to work just fine. The album closes with the very open sounding “Last Way Out.” The acoustic percussion has a nice touch and was something you could imagine playing around a campfire minus the UFO sounding synths.
Lumiere has a ridiculously amount of talent on guitar and good amount when it comes to writing a song as well. When you have this much talent playing an instrument who needs a singer.
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