Get this crazy baby off my head!


Mark Varney Project (MVP) (Feat. Allan Holdsworth & Frank Gambale)

Mark Varney Project (MVP) - Truth In Shredding (Feat. Allan Holdsworth Frank Gambale) - 1990 - Legato Records

MVP stands for the Mark Varney Project. He has been a longtime recruiter of guitar speed demons such as Yngwie Malmsteen and Tony Macalpine. Here he brings together accomplished and established players. It is a very intense fusion recording that can be an intimidating listen both in terms of technique and the consistent intensity maintained throughout. The metal-influenced Frank Gambale is one of the pioneers of the sweep-picking technique that allows him to generate mind-numbing speed.Allan Holdsworth proves a good counterpoint, as his unique approach also produces lightning-quick runs. Guitar fans, especially the younger crowd, will appreciate the extended solos and lack of any commercial hooks here. It is basically a blowing date; however, it pales in comparison to a jazz blowing date because the players quickly run out of ideas and continuously revert back to familiar territory. This is not to say that the musicians don't deserve credit for their playing -- quite the contrary; it's just that the abundance of linear scales and repetitive patterns proves tiresome. Out of the two, Gambale seems a bit more inspired and more comfortable in this setting. Tommy Brechtlein turns in a fine performance on drums, especially when given some space on "Bathsheba." If taken in short doses, the impact of this recording is more effective. Recommended for fans ranging from fusion to progressive to metal. © Robert Taylor © 2014 AllMusic, a division of All Media Network, LLC. | All Rights Reserved

"Truth in Shredding" is the first studio album by The Mark Varney Project (MVP). The band was a short-lived collaborative concept devised by Mark Varney (brother of Mike Varney, the founder of Shrapnel Records), featuring guitarists Frank Gambale and Allan Holdsworth. "New Boots" was composed by Frank Gambale. The other six tracks are covers of jazz fusion compositions by Randy Brecker, Michael Brecker, Wayne Shorter, and Chick Corea. Mark Varney has said "When I approached Frank (Gambale) with the MVP concept and asked him if he would do it if I could bring Allan (Holdsworth) on board, he jumped at the chance, especially since I let him pretty much choose his favorite fusion tracks and players he was comfortable with. I was fortunate that I didn't have to do much convincing of Allan since, for the most part, he liked the tunes and respected Frank's playing. To this day, I believe both count TIS as one of their favorite projects." "Truth In Shredding" is a superb jazz fusion album by two guitar giants, and HR by this blog. Listen to Frank Gambale's "The Great Explorers" album, and Allan Holdsworth's "Road Games" album. You should also check out Allan Holdsworth's great "I.O.U. Band Live" album [All tracks @ 320 Kbps: File size = 136 Mb]


1. Rocks - Randy Brecker 7:01
2. Humpty Dumpty - Chick Corea 6:31
3. The Fall - Wayne Shorter 8:15
4. Not Ethiopia - Michael Brecker 9:36
5. New Boots - Frank Gambale 6:24
6. Ana Maria - Wayne Shorter 9:15
7. Bathsheba - Michael Brecker 8:16


Frank Gambale – lead electric guitar, acoustic guitar, rhythm guitar
Allan Holdsworth – lead electric guitar, SynthAxe
Jimmy Earl – bass guitar
Freddy Ravel – keyboards
Tom Brechtlein – drums
Steve Tavaglione – saxophone, EWI


Frank Gambale is best-known for his fiery work with Chick Corea's Elektric Band. He was a student at the Guitar Institute of Technology while in his early twenties, wrote instructional books, and during 1983-1986, was on the school's faculty. He joined Corea in 1986, has also performed with Steve Smith's Vital Information, and has been a leader on his own rock-oriented dates for JVC. A collaboration with bassist Stu Hamm and drummer Steve Smith was another fruitful venture for Gambale, spawning several discs between the three that became increasingly ambitious as time went by. © Scott Yanow © 2010 Rovi Corporation. All Rights Reserved http://www.allmusic.com/artist/frank-gambale-p6551


Guitarist Allan Holdsworth is widely considered to be one of the finest instrumentalists in all of jazz fusion, yet has never truly received the recognition that he so rightfully deserves. Born on August 6, 1946, in Bradford, Yorkshire, Holdsworth was originally taught music by his father, who was a pianist. First a saxophone player, Holdsworth didn't pick up the guitar until he was 17 years old, but learned the instrument quickly. After playing in local outfits (in addition to learning the violin), Holdsworth relocated to London, where he was taken under the wing of saxophonist Ray Warleigh. By 1972, Holdsworth had joined progressive rockers Tempest, appearing on the group's self-titled debut a year later before joining Soft Machine in December 1973 -- and radically changing the latter outfit's sound to guitar-based fusion in the process. U.S. drummer Tony Williams discovered Holdsworth around this time, which led to an invite for the up-and-coming guitarist to replace John McLaughlin in Williams' Lifetime project -- Holdsworth abruptly left Soft Machine in March of 1975, subsequently appearing on the Williams recordings Believe It and Million Dollar Legs. But Holdsworth's union with Williams was a brief one, as the guitarist joined up with French-English prog rockers Gong for such albums as 1976's Gazeuse! (released as Expresso in the U.S.) and 1978's Expresso II, in addition to guesting on recordings by Jean-Luc Ponty, Bill Bruford, Gordon Beck, Jack Bruce, and UK. Also in the late '70s, Holdsworth launched a solo career, which over the years has seen the release of nearly 20 albums (a few standouts include 1983's Road Games, 1985's Metal Fatigue, 1994's Hard Hat Area, and 2000's The Sixteen Men of Tain), as the guitarist has been joined by such acclaimed musicians as Paul Williams (a former bandmate of Holdsworth's in Tempest), Gary Husband, Chad Wackerman, Gary Husband, Jimmy Johnson, Steve Hunt, and Alan Pasqua, among others. In the mid-'80s, Holdsworth was one of the first musicians to use a Synthaxe, a guitar that contained a breath controller that proved to be a cross between a synthesizer, guitar, and saxophone (Holdsworth was awarded Best Guitar Synthesist from 1989 through 1994 in the readers' poll of Guitar Player magazine). In the '90s, Holdsworth also created his own signature guitar model with the Carvin company. In the mid-'90s, Holdsworth briefly shifted away from his fusion originals and recorded an album with longtime musical partner Gordon Beck that dipped into jazz standards. The Sixteen Men of Tain (2000) marked another shift, in that it was the first Holdsworth release to feature an all-acoustic rhythm section. This was followed in 2002 by All Night Wrong, his first official live release. Then! Live in Tokyo was next, featuring Holdsworth's 1990 live band, which was followed by Against the Clock, a career retrospective, in 2005. © Greg Prato © 2010 Rovi Corporation. All Rights Reserved http://www.allmusic.com/artist/allan-holdsworth-p6754/biography


A.O.O.F.C said...


P/W is aoofc

Hellraiserball said...

Thanks for this cd,love the 90s shred/fusion.very hard to find stuff..thanks!

A.O.O.F.C said...

Hi,Hellraiserball! It is hard to find, but well worthwhile looking for this music. Thanks a million for your comment & please keep in touch!..ATB Paul