Phil Dirt - Reverb Central - PO Box 1609, Felton, CA 95018-1609 USA
Angelo Santoro - Recordings 1985/1995dotdotdotdot
artworkAngelo Santoro's version of "Meadowlands" on Santoro II is the version that inspired the Berzerkers to play and record that song. While that's not here, these 1990 tracks are very well played and thoroughly enjoyable recordings. The degree to which he develops multiple guitar parts and layers the sound seems to envelope the listener. This is an all original set, except for one medley.
Picks: Angelo's Tune, Belly Dance, Eyes Of Mendusa, Sahara Drums, Solomon's Tomb, Pilatus Pas, Eastwind, Screw Cat Blues, SurfRock (2), D.K.3, Ayiko Bia, SurfRock (1), Cheetah, Hava Nagila, Spy Catcher, The Robot, Kiowa Moon, Oasis (Bassolo), Medley (Spanish Fly - Take Five - Caracas)

Track by Track Review

Angelo's Tune dotdotdotdot
Space (Instrumental)

This is one tweaky song. The atmospherics are scary, the mood slow and not entirely unlike some of the spaced out sounds of the Mutants. Jazzy, spy-like, and intensely relentless.

Belly Dance dotdotdotdot
Cowboy Surf (Instrumental)

With a cowboy beat and a poppy melody, "Belly Dance" is one playful number. Surf guitar plays the melody and the rhythm is infectious. Way fun!

Eyes Of Mendusa dotdotdotdot
Soaring (Instrumental)

"Eyes Of Mendusa" has a larger than the room sound, much like "Angelo's Tune." It is meaner and more intense. Soaring guitars and a slow moody backtrack create an emotional wash of haunted flight. Totally cool!

Sahara Drums dotdotdot
Rock (Instrumental)

Another large sounding track, but this time, the mood is more aggressive. Lots of echo on the many guitars gives this a huge sense of space and volume.

Solomon's Tomb dotdotdot
Rock (Instrumental)

Moving slowly down the road to war... or something like that. There's a very solemn emotional content here, and long sustained notes for drama. Quite large sounding.

Pilatus Pas dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

The guitars rip, the song is upbeat and fast, and the double picked notes spill like the lip curling over the top of a mighty wall of water. "Pilatus Pas" is a charging and very cool surf instro with a very unique sound and fury.

Eastwind dotdotdot
Space (Instrumental)

"Eastwind" is a slow song in a wash of reverb that gives it a distant and huge sound. Lots of drama and ambiance.

Screw Cat Blues dotdotdot
Blues (Instrumental)

This is a gutty blues-rock number with

SurfRock (2) dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

"SurfRock" is a cool number with real surfability and rich textures. The melody is circular, and the rhythm drives the song right along. Great glissandos and imagery.

D.K.3 dotdotdotdot
Exotic (Instrumental)

"D.K.3" is a jazzy and exotic number with tribal percussion and an engaging melody. This would be an interesting inclusion in an exotica soundtrack for your next tiki party.

Ayiko Bia dotdotdot
Bluesy (Instrumental)

This structurally reminds me of a couple of early Harvey Mandell songs. Jazzy, atmospherically psychedelic, and sultry, with a blues underbelly.

SurfRock (1) dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

This rendering of "SurfRock" all about the muted notes and the more delicate side of the surf. It's much moodier and more fluid. It's really hard to pick between the two. Way cool.

Cheetah dotdotdot
Rock (Instrumental)

That deep gutty sound that Jet Harris and Tony Meehan got leads "Cheetah." It's not exactly melodic, but is reminiscent of some of the early Revels tracks filtered through that UK sound.

Hava Nagila dotdotdot
Rock (Instrumental)

This is a completely original arrangement of "Hava Nagila," with none of the usual surfisms, or traditional values for that matter. Moody, dark, brooding, and kinda spooky.

Spy Catcher dotdotdot
Rock (Instrumental)

Blending spy and surf sounds, "Spy Catcher" is a romp through a riff's dark side. Not as well developed arrangement wise as most of Angelo Santoro'a recordings.

The Robot dotdotdot
Pink Spy (Instrumental)

This is a Henry Mancini-like track, with a playful riff and cute sound. This could easily be morphed into a more surfable arrangement, not that there isn't a share of surf here. Pretty fun. It's not the Joe Meek song.

Kiowa Moon dotdotdotdotdot
Space (Instrumental)

Watery wah-wah, spooky drums, spacy warblings, dramatic chords ringing... "Kiowa Moon" is a very cool track. It takes its time to develop, growing ever so slowly from mood to dark melody. Big and completely haunted.

Oasis (Bassolo) dotdotdotdot
Middle Eastern (Instrumental)

More spooky sophisticated sound flows like Gabor Szabo's Mizrab or a Mermen psychedelic soundscape. Dramatic, intelligent, moody, and very visual.

Medley (Spanish Fly - Take Five - Caracas) dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

This medley is a long and mathematical journey through three songs, "Spanish Fly," the every wonderful "Take Five," and "Caracas)." Big and spooky and just odd enough to keep you slightly off balance without putting you off.