Phil Dirt - Reverb Central - PO Box 1609, Felton, CA 95018-1609 USA
The Jokers - Beat Guitarsdotdot
artworkI think Beat Guitars is nowhere near as interesting as their Guitars Extraordinary album. Most of the tracks are restrained and pallid, though a couple get the juices flowing.
Picks: Carioca, Chattanooga Choo Choo, Sabre Dance, Tabou, Black Eyes, Moscow Guitar, Song Of Delilah

Track by Track Review


Drina March dotdotdot
Beat (Instrumental)

"Drina March" is spunky enough, but it seems pretty sterile. There's plenty of twang, and it's played very well, but it just doesn't grab me at all.

Carioca dotdotdot
Beat (Instrumental)

"Carioca" features muted guitar played really fast, almost double picked in some verses, and long echo delayed lines in others. This is a low energy performance that straddles the line between rock and pop.

Chattanooga Choo Choo dotdotdot
Beat (Instrumental)

This is a pretty fun rendition of Glenn Miller and his Orchestra's "Chattanooga Choo Choo." It's pretty spunky, and there are some very nice licks. While fairly tame, it has its moments.

Gloris, In In Excelsis Deo dotdot
Beat (Instrumental)

This is a very tame romancer with very light guitar. It's pretty enough, but unremarkable.

Sabre Dance dotdotdot
Beat (Instrumental)

Aside from the light guitar tone and restrained playing, "Sabre Dance" borders on rockin'! If they just cranked up the amps and beat the drums... ah, well, probably one of those situations where the engineer said you play soft and I make it come out loud - NOT!

Tabou dotdotdotdot
Beat (Instrumental)

This is a really nice version of this exotica classic, with shallow tremolo and an easy, slightly exotic rhythm section. Near surf chords create an island sense. The muted chords add chunk. This will grow on you!

Hully Gully Stomp
Beat (Instrumental)

This is very pedestrian pop-rock with a chorus singing praises of dance craze. Quite unremarkable.

Football Boogie dotdot
Beat (Instrumental)

This is a basic rockabilly boogie. While ostensibly live, "Football Boogie" has the same aural characteristics as the rest of this album, so I think it's dubbed with crowd sounds to sound live.

Spanish Hully Gully dot
Beat (Instrumental)

Spanish chords and stylized guitar tries desperately to make "Hully Gully Stomp" into a new track, but alas it's just more of the same. It's not the same track, of course, but it's equally disinteresting.

Black Eyes dotdotdotdot
Beat (Instrumental)

This starts out as a pleasant version of Yevhen Hrebinka's "Chorni Ochi" The very cool fast section boasts great drums and lots of spunk. As it gets faster, it develops serious life. Plenty of fire and surf whammy chords.

You Are Always In My Heart dotdot
Beat (Instrumental)

This is soft and easy, with a lush and gentle guitar sound. The song is a bit like "Maria Elena."

Moscow Guitar dotdotdot
Cossack Rock (Instrumental)

The Jokers were from Belgium. This classic melody shines with Cossack moods and spunk. A fine and playful tune ripe for surfing up. Very nice picking here, especially the damped echoed lines.

Ronny Boy dotdotdot
Beat (Instrumental)

Cry baby wah wah guitar opens this track. "Ronny Boy" is a pretty song with a lovely guitar sound and easy backtrack.

Song Of Delilah dotdotdot
Beat (Instrumental)

A female voice and bongos are intended to add an exotic air, and in the Hollywood cheese factor way, they do. The guitar is shimmering in lower octaves. This slow moving song is part moody and part sad smoky bar.