Gamalon Marquee @ the Tralf &bull 12/30/96
Like the myth of the Phoenix, that mythical bird that would rise from its own ashes, the powerhouse rock/fusion band Gamalon continues to resurrect and redefine its musical and aesthetic message.
The one constant in their 15-year career has been a dedication to high musicianship, a torch they shine brightly on the roots of progressive rock. Genesis, Yes and Peter Gabriel all influenced Gamalon's early incarnations.
As years passed, they redefined their music of the spheres according to the stylistic contributions of the many master musicians who drifted in and out of the band.
Now, Gamalon has kicked off still another era of creative exploration with guitarist Tony Scozarro and bassist Jim Wynne joining longtime drummer Ted Reinhardt and guitarist Bruce Brucato. As one fan gushed at the end of their first set at the Tralf Saturday: "Best move they've ever made."
Beginnings and endings seem to define Gamalon. Saturday's concert marked the beginning of their latest rebirth, while underscoring the end of an era for an historic club, which opens under new management in 1997.
The new quartet is leaner than previous groupings and drummer Reinhardt, who produced the new CD, "Held To The Light," has moved front and center as musical and titular leader. His drum patterns set the pace and define many of the new songs.
With Scozzaro, Brucato and Wynne tossing their high musicianship into the pot, the band creates a formidable rock/fusion stew.
Highlights included Scozzaro's fuzz-laden, greased lightning solo on the opening song, "Take Your Pick, followed by Brucato's "The Creeps." The longtime Gamalon guitarists has a more staccato, phase-oriented sound reminiscent of Carlos Santana's playing.
Wynne's two-handed bass playing was exceptional, especially on Reinhardt's "Cave," an original dedicated to the late Andy Rapillo and on "Held To The Light."
On "Sahara" and "The Sword," Reinhardt, the gentle giant drummer, created a tapestry of rhythms that evoked the mysticism of the east while the band improvised in and around the ostinato sounds.
It is obvious that all four players listen intently to one another and are inspired by the creative inter-change. They're player's players: devoted to producing the highest quality music, not trendy garbage.
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