CFM - Face in the Mirror CD. Jordan Macarus, known for his role as guitarist and driving force behind the hard rock group Winterhawk, has arrived with a new 12 song CD that is a joy to listen to. His sixth recording, this one runs the gamut from acoustic to rock and blues, filled with the breathtaking leads we are accustomed to hearing from this astonishing guitarist. This disc is mostly studio with a smattering of live and in many cases he has written all the instruments and vocals himself.
The players on this album need no introduction; they are Bobby Scumaci and Mark Ott from the legendary Dave Mason Band along with some of Chicago's other finest musicians. The resulting material is open and airy, 5th's and 9th's abound, with a driving rhythm like a heartbeat bringing it all home. Much of Jordan's spirituality breathes through his songs, and many of his views on world issues, good / evil, morality... are represented for those who care to listen. He has written lyrics to guide us through terrible times while easing spirits with hope, melody, and intelligent options. There is much here to contemplate and many beautiful musical places to pause for reflection. This disc is important musically, socially, and politically and will be enjoyed by audiences everywhere.
Jordan Macarus: Guitars, Vocals
Bobby Scumaci: Keyboards
Geoff Lowe: Bass
Mark Ott: Drums
Steve Brown: Vocals, Guitar
CFM - "Face In The Mirror" CD '06 (Rockadrome, US) - The subject of favourite guitarists is a funny thing. Funny as in "Well, I've actually never played guitar before, but I did stay at a Holiday Inn Express last night?" Well, no but funny as in how hard a thing is it to decide. I mean, there are some players that pretty much define a particular genre for me. For example, as far as pure metal guitarists go, Akira Takasaki (Loudness, Lazy, etc.) is pretty much "the man" for me. There are other great ones for sure, but if I'm putting down my last dollar on the best metal guitarist of all time, it's gonna be Akira. Same kinda thing goes for Celtic folk. Semi-local guy Zan McLeod is in charge there, for me. Again, plenty of other hot players, but for that style, Zan's a slam dunk. When you talk about overall favourite guitarist, however, that's a lot more complicated issue. How do you measure a metal player, a jazz player, a folk guy....? It's just not easy & it starts to get a little bit like a sports MVP vote. Except for the fact that I do have one. See, ever since I first heard the 1982 release by Chicago band Winterhawk, if there's a choice on one guitar player that I'd pick to listen to...period...it would be Jordan Macarus. On that record, in a space of about 40 minutes, Jordan pretty much explained to me through his playing that there were about 1,000,000 more emotions and feelings that one could evoke thru the 6-string musical medium than I'd ever thought possible. It's not that Winterhawk's "Revival" record contains the fastest picking in the world, or the heaviest tone. No, it's just a soaring testimony about one man's writing & playing ability that, even though hard rock, has not been approached in any genre I've heard. Now, some years and other efforts down the line, Jordan Macarus has issued this "Face In The Mirror" disc under the CFM monicker and let's just say, my opinion of him has not changed one iota. Here you won't find the blazing, high-pitched Rush/Triumph-inspired hard rock that was Winterhawk's forte. Instead, you're greeted by a man who's writing has taken a wonderfully personal introspective turn both musically & lyrically. On this CD, Macarus delivers songs that surely do rock but in a different sense. We have our senses filled by numbers borne on winds of open-air chords, spinning the musical feel of the heartland into a web of beauty from a guitar player who truly speaks the instrument's language. Joining Jordan in this masterpiece are some of Illinois' most highly-regarded musicians such as Bobby Scumaci (keys) & Mark Ott (drums) from the Dave Mason Band. Together they roll effortlessly through awesome songs like "The Doorway," "Nowhere Man" & "Coyote." These are first and foremost songs, which Jordan augments deftly with his lyrical guitarwork that can range from sweet and melodic to angular and aggressive, depending on the mood. The open-air chords give a super-organic breathing space to the numbers, allowing them to grow in your mind like a flourishing wheat field. In all, this album is simply fantastic, and not only for the guitar afficianados out there. This is a winner for everybody!
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