Phil Dirt - Reverb Central - PO Box 1609, Felton, CA 95018-1609 USA
Billy Mure - Supersonic Guitarsdotdotdot
artworkSo much electric guitar before that advent of surf was pop fluff that's it's scary to imagine how we got to surf, and yet there were players like Billy Mure who actually plaid with some verging-on-rock flair. This is among the more interesting things from the non-rock world of 1959.
Picks: Hindustan, Limehouse Blues, Pagan Love Song, El Cumbanchero

Track by Track Review

Hindustan dotdotdot
Easy Listening Guitar (Instrumental)

A cycling rhythm and bass riff, rock drums, and a basically edgy performance, along with some aggressive lead playing make "Hindustan" an anomalous middle of the road release. It's as if they were rocking mightily from their rocking chairs, if you can image such a thing. It's not quite rock'n'roll, but it's formatted as such, and played more aggressively than most MOR instros of the day. "Hindustan" probably scared some listeners!

Lover's Guitar dotdot
Easy Listening Guitar (Instrumental)

"Lover's Guitar" is mostly interesting for its muted picking and melody line, a style picked up in the midwest four years later. Only the reverb separates this from surf from a conceptual point of view. Syncopated echo simulates double picking. Aside from that, it's very light and definitely targeted at the staid adult audience.

Limehouse Blues dotdotdot
Rock (Instrumental)

Rock drums, Japanese themes, and poppy edge dominate here. Aggressive playing as if rock and roll was at hand falls short only because of lead guitar tone. Certainly the drums and bass rock! Tool cool, and very out of step with the usual MOR fair of the day.

Marie dotdotdot
Easy Listening Guitar (Instrumental)

With a slightly rocking backtrack, the gentility of the subject matter keeps this squarely inside the MOR city limits, but there certainly are rock elements here too!

Pagan Love Song dotdotdot
Easy Listening Guitar (Instrumental)

Tribal drums, exotic bongos, rock bass, and a simple rock progression make "Pagan Love Song" a bit of a rocker. The lead guitar is pretty aggressive for adult session work of the day. Edgy and fun.

Tiger Guitars dotdotdot
Near Surf (Instrumental)

So here's the deal! It's 1959, and Billy Mure starts "Tiger Guitars" with trashy glissandos, which continue to appear throughout. Holy cow! Beyond the glissandos and rockabilly beat, this is a regular old guitar boogie riff rocker.

Guitars In Space dotdot
Easy Listening Guitar (Instrumental)

This is a combination raucous booming romp and useless picking demo. It's very rhythmic and throbbingly flashy, but not particularly enduring because there is little change throughout the track.

Granada dotdot
Easy Listening Guitar (Instrumental)

The classic "Granada" sports a combo backtrack and light weight lead melody, though you can well imagine that the attack on the guitar would be really amped up if the amp was actually turned up. Then again, it's not all that interesting.

Pennies From Heaven dotdot
Easy Listening Guitar (Instrumental)

Ultra classic "Pennies From Heaven" is done with semi spunky drums, walking bass, and light weight guitars. OK, but aside from the drums, not particularly interesting.

El Cumbanchero dotdotdot
Easy Listening Guitar (Instrumental)

The guitar tone and amplifier level keeps "El Cumbanchero" from really rocking. Excellent playing against an infectious backtrack, but that's not enough to really blow it over the top. Still, the energy is great, and there are some rockin' jams in the middle, along with great drums!

High Tide Boogie dotdot
Easy Listening Guitar (Instrumental)

A circular bass line and easy listening jump rhythm support fluffy guitar. Not very memorable.

Linger Awhile dotdot
Easy Listening Guitar (Instrumental)

"Linger Awhile" is a little edgy and spunky, but it's also pretty not particularly adventurous or intense. Tone occasionally borders on distortion.