Phil Dirt - Reverb Central - PO Box 1609, Felton, CA 95018-1609 USA
Angelo Santoro - Santoro II - Land Of The Pharaodotdot
artworkMuch of the music here is borrowed from Jet Harris and Tony Meehan. The arrangements, however belong to that guy in the corner of the lounge playing guitar along with his rhythm master. Mostly unremarkable.
Picks: Hole Of The Mountain King, Thema Proluis, Nivram, (Ghost) Riders In The Sky, Jet Is Back, Cuban Affair, Amber, Diamonds - Funk, Land Of The Pharaoh, Besame Mucho, Diamonds - Rock, Scarlet O'Hara, Barba, Jacunda - Part I, Jacunda - Part II

Track by Track Review

Hole Of The Mountain King dotdotdotdot
Rock (Instrumental)

With a blend of influences, Angelo Santoro has fun with this arrangement of the Edvard Grieg' composition "In The Hall Of The Mountain King." At the top is a kind of blend of the Shadows and Jet Harris and Tony Meehan, and then there are those double picked slow glissandos from the surf genre. It's not a surf instro per say, but there's enough of the feel to make it fit right in. It;'s on the soft side, yet sports some edge and grit.

Thema Proluis dotdotdot
Rock (Instrumental)

Unchanging relentlessness programmed percussion,with a pleasant melody line. Unremarkable. It's pretty well thought out, but more easy going backdrop than front and center listening.

Nivram dotdot
Rock (Instrumental)

Aside from the stereo guitar duet leads, Hank Marvin's "Nivram" is unremarkable. Softish and fit for dinner.

(Ghost) Riders In The Sky dotdotdot
Rock (Instrumental)

Blending the Santoro sound with disco-ish programmed percussion and a squishy chorus, this version of the Stan Jones classic is nonetheless quite enjoyable. It's just not memorable.

Jet Is Back dot
Rock (Instrumental)

Mid tempo and completely forgettable, "Jet Is Back" is pretty and smooth. It's just a long way from here to rock 'n' roll.

Cuban Affair dotdotdot
Rock (Instrumental)

"Cuban Affair" is pretty, with glissandos and surfable melody, but not a surf sound. The beat is not even remotely surf, but some enterprising surfband looking for an ultra obscure melody to morph just might seek this out. The percussion is not just programmed, it's cheesy with the syn-drum and disco high frequency stuff.

Amber dot
Rock (Instrumental)

Much in the Shadows meet Jet Harris and Tony Meehan mold, "Amber" sports a semi-cowboy beat and slushy chorus. Quite forgettable.

Diamonds - Funk dotdot
Rock (Instrumental)

When Jerry Lordan's "Diamonds" was gritted down on lead bass by Jet Harris and Tony Meehan, it had a very impressive sound. Influenced yes, but impressive no. Quite pedestrian. And I'm sure there's some funk influence 'cuz it says so, but aside from the bass and cheap percussion, I don't hear it.

Land Of The Pharaoh dotdotdot
Rock (Instrumental)

Put aside the syn-drums and disco beat, and you'll discover an interesting and dramatic instrumental just waiting for a soft Slacktone arrangement, or maybe even the Mermen. Quite a cool bit of writing. As is, the sorta harpsichord duel-note guitar lines and aural qualities are just not interesting.

Besame Mucho dot
Rock (Instrumental)

Cheesy, three piece suit trying to be cool... I just don't get this at all. Low down lead with no soul at all, and that chorus!!!!

Diamonds - Rock dotdot
Rock (Instrumental)

The arrangement owes its life to Jet Harris and Tony Meehan, but Angelo Santoro forgot to borrow the coolness. Sad at best, though it's better than the funk arrangement. And why those syn-drums!!

Scarlet O'Hara dotdot
Rock (Instrumental)

This is so contrived! Sad chorus, programmed percussion, and old-man rock-free sound. Egad!

Barba dot
Rock (Instrumental)

The percussion is almost Latin, but the rest is of no consequence at all. If you worship elevator, this will burn your soul, but otherwise...

Jacunda - Part I dotdotdot
Rock (Instrumental)

Percussionally interesting in the same way Sergio Mendez was able to make Brazilian fluff enticing, "Jacunda - Part I" is an all-percussion flight that leads into part 2, where the melody begins.

Jacunda - Part II dotdotdot
Rock (Instrumental)

Continuing the beat, with guitars not added, "Jacunda - Part II" is an odd mix of Asian melody and South American percussion. Jazzy and quite fun.