This review was originally written by Jose Bernardo for www.theweeklyriff.com between 2008 and 2010.
These were Jose’s first impressions of the songs and were not written after multiple spins.
Artist: BJ Block
Album: Glitterball (2008 Self Published)
Tracks: 8 (35 minutes)
Artist website : facebook.com/bjblockmusic/
The first thought that came to my mind was this: “70’s funk?” Yes, that is what this album is – for the most part. It is a trip back to the 70’s and one would never know that this album was written in the early 21st century. That’s the first half of the album.
The other half of the album is more modern. A bit new age like filled with more airy soundscapes than retro stylings. It looses momentum from the start of the record.
Mr. Block definitely knows his 70’s style well and is not afraid to show it. This album is not so much “retro” as it is a showcase of someone who could have well been a session musician/producer back in the 1970’s. This album of guitar driven instrumental offerings is great!
The Twilight Drive-In, Charlesgate East, The Coloring Book
PLAY BY PLAY REVIEW
Track 1 – Theme Musik
No, it’s not your TV and a re-run of your favorite 70’s cop drama starting, it is the opening track of the CD. It definitely sets the pace for the album. Cool track. Of all the things that could have caught my ear, it was the glockenspiel.
Track 2 – The Twilight Drive-In
I’m not sure if we were watching a thriller or a western. Maybe a bit of both. The drums on this track feel a bit mechanical. The guitar work is superb.
Track 3 – Charlesgate East
Because this track is totally different from the rest of the album, it stands out. It is a dreamy, airy, peaceful track that is driven by a very beautiful guitar. It even sounds like there is a lap steel guitar on this track!
Track 4 – Mersey Beat
The glockenspiel is back and so the saga of this cop drama continues…
In all honesty, this track is again a brilliant display of understanding the dynamics of this style. After reviewing this track, I placed this track to play right after Track 1 and it sounds great! The bass tone in this song is great!
Track 5 – Kaleidoscope
This is the only track on the album that I felt didn’t belong. The guitar work is again very good, but it lacks a compositional aspect that all the other compositions on this album have.
Track 6 – Stickman
This track takes the listener away from the 70’s and drops them in to a 90’s New Age composition for the moment. While it does not jive with the rest of the tracks, it is compositionally solid. The beautiful guitar performances here are noteworthy.
Track 7 – What Could Have Been
This track could have been a 70’s fusion track, but there are aspects of it that are very modern.
Track 8 – The Coloring Book
This is my favorite track on the album because of the beautifully recorded acoustic guitar! Very pretty!