Virtuoso musicians, Danny John (guitar), Marcos Gil (bassist) and drummer James Dennett – The Danny John Trio – have created a strange brew of Led Zeppelin, The Beatles, Van Halen and even some jazz fusion. The exciting Mr. Twister lives up to its name. The album is full of sonic highs and euphoric squelching. What surprised me the most as a reviewer were the subtle change ups and keen storytelling. Each song felt different and evoked an array of images.
“Drift” is an intense, crunchy-guitar driven track. The chords are aggressive, yet, slide alongside an imaginary line of fun and blissful chaos. This was my favorite track of the group.
“Would” feels melodic and airy. The title track has a catchy baseline; the song builds momentum and then drops into a smoother rider. This is all guitar! “Whole” escapes to a more jazz/bluesy space. There’s a crunchy, dark scratching shred that is a distraction, but the changing fusion landscape is interesting.
“Predilection” is an insanely-fun track. It’s trippy and takes a bite at you!
The Danny John Trio writes that “Badland is a song about a journey into Living Dreams, complete isolation, desolation, purgatory and the never ending quest for unattainable tranquillity, perfection, recognition and ultimately, peace.” I would agree. “Badland” feels lazy in the sense it lets your mind wanter aimlessly; the guitar captains the numbing. The guitar slowly builds and expands the colors like a spilled can of paint. It’s beautiful.
“Lighthouse” to me had the most percussion. The quick tempo and rapid feel made for an awe-inspiriting experience.
Overall, the Danny John Trio deliver an A grade for the impressive Mr. Twister. Fans of Steve Vai, guitar instrumentation and melodic rock will find something they like.