Although Music for Mobile Electric Guitars sounds like the title for an instructional DVD about a new Android app, its actually an invigorating collection of 17 progressive instrumental tracks put together by classically-trained composer and performer Patrick Grant as part of his Tilted Axes street theatre collective.
The New Yorker’s inspiring and innovative project sees a large number of individual guitarists and percussionists come together for collective street performances where they process through the chosen city armed with portable amplifiers playing the tunes Grant has composed.
Cool stuff, but what about the music itself? Pleasingly, Grant has put together a very varied album with a range of genres and styles explored, from rock to prog and classical to world music, and fans of Rush will certainly approve.
He has certainly made full use of the 14 guitarists and two percussionists who contributed to the album – to say there’s a lot going on in each track is an understatement.
Another plus is that, despite the complexity of the songs, with all tracks clocking in at less than seven minutes and most around the three to four-minute mark, the album is constantly evolving and shifting, so it never stagnates.
With so many genres and tracks to choose from I’m loathe to name favourites, but I particularly enjoyed the speeding riffs and screaming solos of ‘Beaubien Blues’ – a delightful contrast to the classically inspired atmospheric harmonics of ‘Circulation in G Maybe’.
I’m looking forward to catching Tilted Axes on procession in a city near me soon.
Music for Mobile Electric Guitars is out now.
11 is louder than 10 verdict
11 – Sonic boom
10 – Planet rock
9 – Headbanging
8 – Turn it up
7 – Rocking
6 – Foot tapping
5 – Worth a listen
4 – Background music
3 – Turn it down
2 – Earache
1 – Turn it off
0 – Ear bleeding