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LAGQ's Guitar Heroes

16 customer reviews

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Audio CD, July 9, 2006
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$18.44
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$18.44 & FREE Shipping on orders over $35. Details Only 3 left in stock (more on the way). Ships from and sold by Amazon.com. Gift-wrap available.

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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Amazon.com

These guys are amazing. This CD is for everyone, regardless of "favorite" musical tastes. Classical, pop, new-age, country, whatever: the LAGQ's virtuosity is stunning, and the sounds they make are engaging, clear and clean (and aided by recording engineers who should win the Nobel Prize for recording, were there such a thing). Nominally, this CD is inspired by the heroes of the four members of LAGQ, but that's only a piece of information: What they do with music by, or indebted to, or inspired by their "heroes" is the issue, and it's never less than original, by turns lovely (the Pat Metheny piece), reckless and innovatively busy (Jimi Hendrix's "Pluck, Strum and Hammer"---with gorgeous harmonics), flamenco (Steve Howe's "Aire para un dia," totally re-conceived), and kitchen-sink (Frank Zappa's "Let's be Frank"). Even the infuriating John McLaughlin is well represented. The recording is vivid and the artists are identified from left to right, speaker-wise. And the Chet Atkins piece that closes the CD is nothing short of delicious. What is this uncategorizable CD? A joy---that's what. --Robert Levine

1. Icarus
2. B & B
3. We Know You Know: Reverie For Mahavishnu
4. Pluck, Strum, And Hammer
5. Letter From Home
6. Uarekena
7. Aire Para Un Dia (Mood For A Day)
8. Gypsy Flower
9. Pop
10. El Baile De Luis Alonso
11. Lament And Wake
12. Let's Be Frank
13. Blue Echo/Country Gentleman

Product Details

  • Audio CD (July 9, 2006)
  • SPARS Code: DDD
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Telarc
  • ASIN: B00020PVUC
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (16 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #177,126 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By o dubhthaigh VINE VOICE on August 13, 2004
Format: Audio CD
This is an exciting display of 6 string prowess that really isn't classical, yet will inevitably become a classic. It is an amazing tour de force worthy of the California Guitar Trio. The efforst here focus on composers and players who are heroes to this quartet, and it is a compendium of the best: McLaughlin, Hendrix, Metheny, Towner, Howe, Rheinhart. Each and every selection is brilliant whether they are essaying Norman Blake or Frank Zappa. York, Tennant, Kanengiser and Dearman command their instruments with power and discipline, and the finessse and passion leaps off the strings. The fretwork is a tribute to each of the heroes honored, and indeed this is truly an honouring of great fretmen. The digital encoding of the disc is such that you get a very precise definition of who is playing spacially from right to left. Very impressive, as you would expect from Telarc.

Their take on Towner's "Icarus" is both timely and quite a creative adjustment of the tempo. Steve Howe's "Mood For A Day" undergoes a makeover as a flamenco tour de force, and it actually comes off even more amazing than Howe's various re-workings of this abstemious wonder. At times, the compositions are those of the heroes, at others it is the LAGQ's composition evoking essential qualities of the personalities honoured. It works beautifully on all accounts. If you are a fan of acoustic guitars, or even of any of the guitarists honoured here, you owe it to yourself to pick this up.
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9 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Peter K. on November 17, 2004
Format: Audio CD
It probably seemed like a good, "high concept" idea -- a CD by the creative, adventurous and technically adept LAGQ that, track by track, pays homage to guitarists the group admires.

Known for bending and blending genres, classically trained LAGQ members John Dearman, William Kanengiser, Scott Tennant and Andrew York roam far and wide on "Guitar Heroes." They arrange tunes by Chet Atkins, Yes's Steve Howe and Oregon's Ralph Towner, and interpret pieces written as tributes to Jimi Hendrix, Django Reinhardt and Frank Zappa, among others.

The result is sometimes playful and intriguing, as listeners familiar with the original guitarists hear many musical stretches and reinventions. More often, it's self-conscious, labored and a little too clever, down to titles like "We Know You Know: Reverie for Mahavishnu," written for John McLaughlin, and "Pluck, Strum and Hammer," dedicated to Hendrix.

Along with "Gypsy Flower," a dissonant re-imagining of Reinhardt, these pieces evoke at least some of the style and technique of the "heroes," but not much of the soul.

The best tracks offer more than mere pastiche -- a heartbreaking version of Pat Metheny's "Letter From Home," and the guitarist Sergio Assad's mysterious "Uarekena," the title referring to an indigenous Brazilian tribe.

"Lament and Wake," written by Evan Hirschelman in memory of the late Michael Hedges, also stands out. It includes many of Hedges' radical guitar techniques, but, far more importantly, it's a poignant, stirring six minutes of music.

The final track, the quartet's simulation of Chet Atkins' slap-back echoes on "Blue Echo/Country Gentleman," is a hoot. But much of this disc sounds like pieces that would sound more exciting in concert, two or three per night, perhaps as encores or on the occasion of one of the great guitarists' birthdays. In other words, a little of LAGQ's "Guitar Heroes" goes a long way.
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13 of 17 people found the following review helpful By Jordan78 on July 1, 2004
Format: Audio CD
I JUST GOT THIS CD FROM AMAZON LAST WEEK AND I CAN'T STOP LISTENING TO IT! THESE GUYS ARE IN TOP FORM. I THOUGHT I KNEW WHAT A GUITAR SOUNDS LIKE, BUT I WAS MISTAKEN.
I HAVE NEVER HEARD NYLON STRINGS SOUND LIKE AN ELECTRIC DELAY LIKE ON CHET ATKINS "COUNTRY GENTLEMAN" OR EVEN A FRETLESS BASS SOUND LIKE ON THE MICHAEL HEDGES INSPIRED "LAMENT AND WAKE". THE PAT METHENY SONG IS GREAT AND "B AND B" SOUNDS AS AUTHENTIC AND INSPIRED AS ANY BLUEGRASS TUNE I HAVE EVER HEARD.
I AM QUITE IMPRESSED WITH THE ARTISTS THE LAGQ DECIDED TO PAY TRIBUTE TO. THERE ARE A LOT OF COMPOSERS ON THIS ALBUM I HAVE NEVER HEARD OF BEFORE, WHO ARE PRODUCING SOME REALLY INNOVATIVE MUSIC. THIS JUST MIGHT BE THE LAGQ'S BEST ALBUM. DO YOURSELF A FAVOR AND CHECK THIS ONE OUT.
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10 of 13 people found the following review helpful By J. Blilie on November 23, 2004
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
This is a wonderful disc. I am blown away that anyone knowledgeable about classical guitar or other fingerstyle guitar would find the LAGQ anything less than superb. I have seen them in concert and they were amazing. Their arrangements/performances of parts of Carmen would have been worth the price of admission by itself. These guys are brilliant. The only thing I think you can pick on is possibly the choice of music that they record. Well, that's why we listen to LAGQ instead of other brilliant guitarists such as C. Parkening or D. Russell or P. Romero: because they give us something different.

I own a pile of classical guitar recordings (Williams, Romero's, Parkening, Russell, Segovia, etc., etc., etc.), including from the LAGQ: LAGQ, For Thy Pleasure, and Labyrinth and solo recordings by Kanengiser and York. I am a classical guitar player, fingerstyle steel-string player, and guitar maker.

I like everything from LAGQ and they are incredible in concert. (I can't believe some one doesn't get the joke and allusions in Pachebel's Loose Canon ...) My $0.02.
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