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Misha Calvin - Riffman (CD)

Misha Calvin
by Grigoris Chronis at 07 October 2004, 8:05 PM

Riffman is the third attempt for Yugoslavian guitar virtuoso Misha Calvin, originally released in 1999 via Panoramic Music, also part of the Majestic Rock CD reissues featuring Calvin's discography. Without Ian Parry in the lineup anymore and Marty Smith as the lead singer, it`s the most modern and professional sounding, with more of an obvious direction too. This doesn't apparently mean that if someone had to buy one out of the three (Evolution, Evolution II or Riffman), I would choose this on behalf of (pitty…) him.
Let's say some great solos, powerful vocals, interesting rhythms, an almost progressive keyboardguitar interplay in some songs or songparts… That's it: Misha is flerting strongly with a progressive/multiple-minded/multi-oriented songwriting mood. Some songs are filled with oriental lead parts, while other express the band's experimental interaction. All this, featuring a great vocal performance by Marty Smith, flexible to sing any tune, melody or chord Misha Calvin provides him with. This release is far off from anything that has to do with melodic hard rock, following an even hevier direction with solid parts of neoclassical themes (Ritchie Blackmore-ish enough) plus one or two unfitting poprock ballads, mellowing the average level. Some blusy Gary Moore-wanna-be solos fill the remaining gap.
If Evolution was superb for the melodic Hard Rock fan or Evolution II could tease the follower of guitar virtuosos, Riffman seems to fail structuring an invariable aim. Consider the above irrelevant to the music quality offered. We have to do with an unoubtly skilled and open-minded musician. But, in the end, is this the only thing that matters?

2 Star Rating

Do It Again
You Fake The Truth
See The World
Say My Name
In The Absence Of Reason
You Should Have Told Me
Falling Into You
You Are History
Let Your Heartbeat Show The Way
Instrumental #1 (Bonus)
Instrumental #2 (Bonus)
Instrumental #3 (Bonus)
Misha Calvin - Guitars
Steve Dunning - Bass
Martin Lister - Keyboards
Pete Barnacle - Drums
Marty Smith - Lead vocals
Record Label: Majestic Rock Creations


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