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David T. Chastain, Richie Kotzen, Michael Schenker
July 2002
Released: 1998, Leviathan, Lion Music, SPV
Rating: 2.7/5
Reviewer: JP


I decided to do three very quick reviews as a public service announcement for fans of guitar heroes. These next three CD’s are NOT metal but are worthy of a brief mention as they are mellow offerings from metal artists who have made contributions to the world of metal guitar.

Keep in my mind these rating reflect a total absence of metal.

David T. Chastain - Acoustic Visions

Released: 1998 | Label: Leviathan

Rating: 2.5/5 | Reviewer: JP

As the title suggests this is totally and completely acoustic. No drums, no bass…just Chastain, his stool, his 6 and 12 string and a tape recorder. It has eleven tracks mostly mid-tempo with a few slow tracks scattered throughout. I’m not a musician so I found it difficult to appreciate many of the subtleties this CD has to offer. Good liner notes as always gives a little insight into the feeling of the songs and it is impressive the wide range of sounds and styles an acoustic guitar can make. Pretty cool but for die-hards only.

Richie Kotzen - Slow

Released: 2002 | Label: Lion Music

Rating 2.5/5 | Reviewer: JP

Richie after his stint with Poison and Mr. Big presents us with his 14th, (maybe 15th) solo CD. With a title like SLOW and song titles like “I Can Make you Happy”, “Come Back”, and “Rely on Me” didn’t fill me with confidence. This 14 track CD shows the very mellow side of Mr. Kotzen. This is a solo album through and through; Richie does everything, lyrics, music, playing, and production. No drummer is mentioned so I’m not sure if he programmed a machine or plays himself, but the drums sound pretty decent. Overall the songs are slow and pretty uninspiring, with maybe only “Scared of You” and “Gold Digger” hitting hard rock levels. A laid-back listening experience that ultimately lacks balls. Get his earlier solo work like FEVER DREAM or ELECTRIC JOY, unless you are a collector.

Michael Schenker - Thank You 2

Released: 2002 | Label: SPV

Rating 3/5 |Reviewer: JP

The incredibly prolific Mr. Schenker comes back with his 6th (?) solo CD. Not too mention the 30+ UFO, Scorpions and M.S.G. CD’s he has appeared on. His discography is confusing at best however this CD is not. The original THANK YOU CD was a 1993, fan-club only release that was so well received it was re-issued years later. This is the follow-up almost 10 years later and the subtitle is “Instrumental, Acoustic album.” The packaging is pretty bad , no lyrics, no notes, and Schenker’s looking freaky with his tribal tattoos and his Wolfman Jack/Grizzly Adams beard and wrap around blue shades. The cover is boring two, a drawing of 2 guitars.

Like the Kotzen solo album this is quite mellow and introspective and tunes like “Sound of Love”, “My Life with You”, “I Am Learning”, I Am Sorry”, “Between you and Me”, “From Me With Love” just wanna make me gag. No bass, no drums…however, the songs are quite rocky in places, good riffs some mid-tempo numbers, decent riffs, and excellent picking. Despite the lame nature of much of this disc it has just enough edge in the songwriting that the acoustic songs are quite decent.
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