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Album Review

Unlike jazz, rock has been dominated by singers rather than instrumentalists, but that doesn't mean that rock's instrumentalist minority haven't made some exciting contributions over the years. And those rock instrumentalists have ranged from surf rockers (the Ventures, the Surfaris) to the pickers (acoustic folk-rock guitarists like John Fahey and Leo Kottke) to hard rock shredders of the Steve Vai/Joe Satriani variety. LoNero (a band led by electric guitarist Bill Lonero) falls into the shredder category, but what one hears on J.F.L. isn't an exact replica of Vai and Satriani as they sounded in the '80s. Rather, LoNero bring a post-'80s, post-Nirvana perspective to the shredder school of instrumental rock. Vai and Satriani are influences on this 2011 release, but so is alternative rock; LoNero combine that Vai/Satriani aesthetic with alternative rock, and punk is an influence on aggressive, hard-rocking tracks such as "Discard," "Fat Tat," "Oblivion," and "Little Bastard." Bill Lonero isn't the only Vai/Satriani-influenced guitarist who has shredded in a way that is also mindful of alternative rock and punk; Los Angeles-based guitarist Joe Bochar, aka Joboj, is another shredder who has post-‘80s, post-Nirvana influences. Joboj, like Bill Lonero, has successfully combined his passion for Vai and Satriani with a passion for alternative rock and punk. But it is safe to say that the market hasn't exactly been saturated with guitar-playing instrumentalists who are doing what Joboj and Bill Lonero are doing. The members of LoNero like to describe the instrumental rock on J.F.L. as "guitarcore," but however one describes this 32-minute CD, J.F.L. is an exciting reminder of the fact that not all shredders are oblivious to post-'80s developments in the rock world.

Customer Reviews

Rock that can be the driving force to your day...or the background!

"J.F.L." is the title that says it all--Just F@#king Listen. When I tried to describe this cd to other people, I lost them with the words "no vocals". They immediately dismissed the work as something they wouldn't be interested in. I say to all of you--do what the title says and you won't be disappointed! "Eden" and "Oblivion" are the standout tracks to me, and with a digable rock-to-hard rock-to-prog metal transition between the two of them. The James Dean tributes "Little Bastard" and "Giant" are thoroughly enjoyable and easy to listen to while doing anything else. Really this whole cd has been keeping me company during car commutes this week. The Social Distortion-inspired "Fat Tat" and "Good Luck" give the lineup some more range but are not jarring with the rest of the music. "New Song" was my roommate's fav, and is reminicent of one of the better songs Joe Satriani might have concocted--but didn't. The cd wraps up with a return to the rawk in "King of Damage", but doesn't finish quite as strong as it starts, the only reason I rated 4 of 5. Four and a half is more correct, and I recommend this cd highly. The songwriting from Lonero and Hayes in particular caught my attention, and I will be keeping a close eye on what comes from them and this band in the future.

J.F.L. Rocks

This is a killer c.d. from start to finish.
All of the songs are different & kept me rockin all the way through.
Awesome music guys!!

Rockin tunes

Each album LoNero puts out, keeps getting catchier. I really like my guitar shred music to have melodic hooks and harmonies. Not just insane lead work, but songs, you know? J.F.L. is filled with musical instrumental guitar work that I could enjoy even without the guitar solos.

J.F.L., LoNero
View In iTunes
  • $9.90
  • Genres: Metal, Music, Rock
  • Released: May 23, 2011

Customer Ratings