Nothing Left to Say
Joe “Guido” Welsh, the renegade analog synth wiz responsible for 2004’s audacious Thelonious Moog project Yes We Didn’t, switches to guitar for this scorching homage to mid-’70s fusion, with direct references along the way to six-stringers Carlos Santana, Jeff Beck and Al Di Meola. Precise lines and burning unisons predominate on wailing, Minimoog-laden anthems like “The Busybody,” “Candy Cigarettes” and “Sons of 1974” (that last cut including a nod to prog-rockers Emerson, Lake & Palmer). The clave-fueled “Utopia (Con Carne)” is Todd Rundgren meets Di Meola at Tito Puente’s house, while the funky “Hickory Dickory,” a direct nod to Stanley Clarke’s “Silly Putty,” from his 1975 classic, Journey to Love, has Welsh and guest guitarist Reeves Gabrels engaging in some sick-toned call-and-response. “Cross I” sounds like an outtake from Return to Forever’s Romantic Warrior (it specifically brings to mind “Sorceress”). Saxophonist Jim Hoke plays a John Klemmer-ish echo-laden tenor on the mellow “Buddy Love,” and Welsh unleashes with fusiony abandon on “That Crazy Shit (Almost Caught On),” his ode to a bygone era. They don’t make ’em like this anymore.