It is a true blessing, in the present music generation, to see and hear still musicians that fuse together the idea of evolution and improvisation, translating it into the music they love the most. Groove Is King mirrors perfectly this concept. Put together an ensemble of highly refined and skilled musicians, willing to explore different music styles, 70's and 80's samples and tease their audience with sudden change of tempos and there you will find Rock Candy Funk Party.

Once just a duo project and started in 2007 by Tal Bergman on drums and Ron DeJesus on guitar,  the idea of instrumentally mashing together the results of music experiences collected through the years went exponentially massive, in the minds of these two musicians. So much that Bergman (band leader and producer of RCFP) and DeJesus decided to join forces with guitar genius Joe Bonamassa and one of the best bass player in the American circuit, Mike Merritt, to form Rock Candy Funk Party.

We Want O' Groove, their first album released in 2013, saw Renato Neto on keyboards completing the line-up of the band, in what proved to be a fabulous free-form album, in which the interplay between the band members created a stunning crossover of instrumental recording of soul, jazz, funk and fusion.

Groove Is King is the natural progression of their previous album. There is a total escapism of the whole band from any music parameter in each individual track of this highly palatable album. This time around though, RCFP have gone even one notch further by adding a horn section of the highest standard, by having Randy Brecker on trumpet, James Campagnola on saxophone and Ada Rovatti on saxophone too. To complete the ensemble of such a spectacular line-up, Daniel Sadownick on percussion and Fred Kron on keyboards bring that extra spice that serves perfectly the experimental structure of this All-Star Band.

The whole album is a full disassemble and a clear representation of the band's name and musical meaning. You can get the "Rock" effect by listening to the title-track Groove Is King or Uber Station, not to mention the presence of the great Billy Gibbons as Guest MC on the intro and two segues of the album.

The "Candy" come through tracks like If Six Was Eight, a fabulous tribal duet between Bergman and Sadownick and Rock Candy, a 70's jazz tune that carries memories of John Scofield's sound style, with a fabulous bass line by Mike Merritt. On the same tune, Bonamassa's guitar solos take charge in such a gigantic way half a way of the track. The power, fluidity and class shown by Bonamassa on the Rock Candy's tune are really something  special. Personally, I feel they are some of the best guitar solos the Italo-American Virtuoso has put on a studio album for quite some time.


The "Funk" part is one of the most entertaining of the album, carrying echoes of Prince-meet-Nile Rodgers in the raw and sexy Low Tide or the highly energetic tempo of Don't Funk With Me.

The "Party" factor is what makes this band really extraordinary. There is a special treat for every music lover, from the 70's Saturday Night Disco tempo of Don't Be Stingy With The SMPTE, moving into the groove of The 6 Train To The Bronx, arriving to the Prodigy-meet-The Chemical Brothers-meet-Led Zeppelin stratospheric finale of The Fabulous Tales Of Two Bands.

This record is a clear demonstration of what music is and should be all about; improvisations, craftmanship, deep understanding of music history and a damn fine ability. Big credit to Tal Bergman for assembling such great musicians all together in the same room and believing in one of the most original music projects on the whole music scene worldwide. If this album would be a road, it would be the runway to the future of music. Truly excellent album.


Giovanni "Gio" Pilato


Groove Is King is out now and can be purchased via Mascot Label Group or via Amazon


Chris Ross and the North

Young Once

RELEASE DATE: June 2, 2015/Independent

WEBSITE: Chris Ross and the North


Singer-songwriter, Chris Ross is no stranger to the New England area music scene. "A voice made for acoustic guitar, more dirt road than gravel, never sliding off to twang, and sharply honest", Bluebird Reviews writes of Ross's 2012 release, The Steady Stumble. Months later, BBR notes of Halfway to Wonderland , "I heard contemporary singer-songwriter tones of the Counting Crows, Ray LaMontagne and even some classic soul influences in these tracks." For his efforts, Ross earned 2014 Singer/Songwriter New England Music Awards.

chrisrossandthenorthbandSpring 2015, Ross breached his singular periphery and teamed with musicians Ryan Curless - drums, backup vocals, Caleb Sweet - bass, backup vocals and Zachary Bence - electric guitars, piano, organ, to form Chris Ross and the North. From the look on their faces, The North is more than a backing band: They're a brotherhood.


The cover of the album says it all about Galactic's intents about taking their music to outer space. An astronaut's helmet with the moon in the background depicts perfectly the mission that the fabulous New Orleans funk collective want to achieve on their new record, Into The Deep.

Masterfully produced by band members and hugely skilled musicians Ben Ellman and Robert Mercurio, the album showcases a series of infectious R&B and Funk-Soul gems, which include guest appearances of some of the most important artists of this genres of the last three decades of music worldwide.

The title track features a Macy Gray at the top of her form. A slow soul number permeated of that grace and class that emerges, as always, through the voice of the Ohio-born diva. This is just one of the many surprises on Into The Deep, though.

JJ Grey's energy and powerful vocal delivery on Higher And Higher, Mavis Staples deep and passionate performance on Does It Really Make A Difference, David Shaw and Maggie Koehrner's outstanding duet on Dolla Diva, make you fall in love with this album deeper and deeper on each listen.

The instrumental numbers are, though, the key factor on the Galactic's album. Long Live The Borgne, Sugar Doosie and most of all, Buck 77, with that classic 70's tempo that ignites memories of Isaac Hayes at his very best, are true testimony of style, ability and artistry of the highest quality of this fantastic band.

Galactic wanted to take their music through the universe and into space with Into The Deep. Mission accomplished, without a doubt.


Giovanni "Gio" Pilato


Into The Deep is released by Provogue, part of Mascot Label Group and can be purchased here





Never give for grant what Warren Haynes' next project may be. In his long and successful career, the American guitarist has often surprised medias and fans with his unpredictable and highly brilliant changes of music direction, incontrovertable sign of great knowledge, appreciation and deep understanding of music at 360 degrees.

Ashes & Dust is a record that Haynes had in his mind for a very long time, given the fact that some of the songs of the album have been written almost 25 years ago. Somehow, though, for various reasons, those songs never managed to fit on any record that Haynes had previously done with the Mule or with the Allman Brothers, right until now.

Lyrically, the album is an intimate excursion into friendship, loss, distance and redemption, sang with that typical honesty and pathos by Haynes. In some aspects, Ashes & Dust, musically speaking, is a true revelation. The guitarist manages to assemble a wonderful combustion of Americana with hints of folk, blues and roots, splendidly supported by the Railroad Earth, a group of musicians that Haynes has been knowing and played with for quite some time. The quality, the beauty and the intensity of Warren Haynes' slide guitar sound too, on this record, is a further demonstration of the immense skills in the music repertoire of the American guitarist/singer/songwriter. 

Blue Maiden's Tale, one of the tracks of the album, echoes almost an ethereal, Celtic type of sound that works wonderfully as a platform for Warren Haynes' lyrics: "There's a story, no one knows if it is true, about a maiden, just as pretty as you."

Haynes' new record is possibly one of the most personal and passionate music journey that this fabulous artist has created throughout his entire career. A truly, fabulous album.


Giovanni "Gio" Pilato


Ashes & Dust can be purchased via Mascot Label Group or via Amazon

Bottle Full Of Blues350x

It has been a long journey for Jeff Fetterman, since his 1999 debut album, Ordinary Man, to record Bottle Full Of Blues, perhaps the album of a lifetime. This extraordinary bluesman from Pennsylvania has exponentially increased his popularity, through the years, with fans and media by combining a winning combustion of blues, rock and funk, the very same formula that brought him to write Bottle Full Of Blues.

The album is an elegant exercise of songwriting skills and phenomenal music ability, not just by Fetterman himself but by the whole array of musicians performing on the album too. In that respect, the instrumental Devil's Shuffle pitches to perfection the craftmanship of the whole band, with Fetterman, Otis James on Harmonica, Anthony Brown on keys and Ralph Reitinger III teasing one another in this brilliant number.

There are lots of radio friendly tracks on the album; the opening Paradise starts as a blues/rock, to then deviating to an irresistible funkadelic tempo. Southbound is a rock tune that would have made Chuck Berry and Jerry Lee Lewis ecstatic with joy, with Fettermans' powerful guitar riffs and the band complementing splendidly Fetterman's voice with a muscular performance on this track.

The album title track Bottle Full Of Blues and Wash My Blues Away are delicate, but intense ballads and perhaps the best demonstration of what Jeff Fetterman is all about. Both tracks showcase his incredible guitar ability with some very powerful vocals, as a demonstration of a musical maturity exploding on full blast on this album.

It may be a Bottle Full Of Blues, as the album title suggests, but Jeff Fetterman and his band are far from being uniquely defined as blues musicians. This album, undoubtedly, is a clear statement of Fetterman's music vision and the shape of things to come in his career. A music career that will take him certainly to the zenith of music scene real soon.


Giovanni "Gio" Pilato


Bottle Full Of Blues can be purchased on CD Baby or as a download via Amazon


One can say a lot of things about Satriani's ability and eclecticism on playing guitar but never that he is a predictable artist.

Shockwave Supernova is almost a concept album, inspired by the fact that, at the end of his last tour, Satriani felt that on stage he had developed an alter ego, becoming somebody that was carrying out a different side of his personality, wild and incontrollable, whilst performing live.

Satriani is an artist that lets his guitar sing, rather than his own voice and always with astonishing results. Shockwave Supernova is an incredible ensemble of 15, free-formula tracks, in which Satriani concentrates more on a straighter style of guitar playing, rather than gunblazing his formidable array of instrumental rock tones.

The album sees "Satch" teasing his fans, mixing his rock formula with elements of different music genres such as blues, samba, jazz and swing, also thanks to the formidable support of the musicians accompaining the guitarist on this musical journey.

To focus on a few tracks in particular, on this fabulous album, would mean diminishing the masterpiece of an artist at one of the highest peaks of his career. Lost In A Memory, though,  deserves a particular mention; Satriani wrote this tune back in the late '80s and never managed to find the right melody. Now, thanks to the groove brought by Marco Minnemann on drums and Bryan Beller on bass, this spectacular track finally sees the light of the day.

With Shockwave Supernova, the "guitarist extraordinaire" from New York nails one of the best albums of his long-running career. This album speaks to people's heart in a more direct way than his previous works, managing to create a sonic bridge that carries sounds and melodies between the artist and any music fan.

If this is the result of the almost incontrollable Alter-Ego of the American guitarist that emerges during his live shows, many music lovers are in for a treat from now to years to come.


Giovanni "Gio" Pilato



Shockwave Supernova is released on 24th July 2015 and can be purchased Here

Joe Satriani World Tour begins 17th September in Europe - US Tour planned early 2016. Find all the details about the Tour by following this Link




Neal Schon is, undoubtedly, having one of his most inspired periods of creativity. His previous album, So U, showed clear signs of the guitarist's return to music excellence, signs re-inforced and confirmed on Schon's new release, Vortex.

The 2-CD all-instrumental album captures the rock guitarist in great form, showing once again his full versatility in this labour of phenomenal skills and craftmanship. A labour of love, too, considering that Schon dedicated, in the sleeve notes of the album, Vortex to his wife Michaele.

Vortex is a delightful album made of incredible rock vignettes, tinted with different elements of world music, jazz, classical and occasionally, even fusion. The opening Miles Beyond is a clear statement of intents on what the album is going to be like; a classy flight on rock experimentations, crafted with the attention to detail by a true Maestro. El Matador, Irish Cream and Airliner NS910 make rocking hearts pulsate even deeper, through Schon's majestic style and Steve Smith thunderous work on drums.

Jan Hammer, one of the most talented keyboardists worldwide is a vital presence on the album too. He and Igor Len add an even vigorous depth to the album by offering, possibly, the best keys on any rock record heard for a very long time. A track like Schon & Hammer Now, is a real demonstration of two musicians at the top of their game and an absolute joy to listen to, whether one may be a rock music fan or not.

There are some beautiful ballads too on the album, such as Tortured Souls, Unspoken Faith and Mom, the latter dedicated to Neal's mother Barbara.

An absolute gem of an album and most certainly a record that comes straight from the heart and soul of the american guitarist. The most sonic masterpiece of Neal Schon ever.


Giovanni "Gio" Pilato




Vortex is available on Mascot Label Group and Amazon 

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