If you like a guitar album where the guitarist is flashy and playing speedy riffs and using common techniques, this album is not for you. If you like good guitar, sorry, fantastic guitar, played by one of the top guitarists in the profession, with emotional accents and a skill born only from experience, then you’ll enjoy Martin Barre’s Stage Left.
Jethro Tull’s guitarist’s newest solo effort is an extreme pleasure for the ears and for the soul. Never overdone, never even comes close to be overdone. Barre knows what needs to go in and what is superfluous. Using a collection of guitars and mandolins, Martin Barre plays incredible melodies and solos, heartfelt rhythms and overall powerful music.
Martin Barre lets his talent and his flair come out and moves in a direction which, although not alien to Tull, is nevertheless quite his own. This album is quite refreshing and a must-have for anyone who appreciates music. Real music.
If you’ve been reading my reviews, you know how much I hate most guitar albums as most tend to be done by good or even great guitarists who have no other goal than to show off their prowess. Barre puts the music first. The integrity of the song is never compromised. The playing, though, you ask? It’s Martin Barre, do I really need to say more? Thirty-five years with Jethro Tull, constant practice and seeking of new methods and new sounds. All of it is on this wonderful album. Don’t even think about it twice; 14 tracks played by a grand master of the six-string; just buy it and pleasure your ears and your heart!