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Rock: Instrumental Rock Rock: Progressive Rock Moods: Featuring Bass
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by Bryan Beller

The debut solo album from longtime Mike Keneally (Frank Zappa) bassist Bryan Beller. A carefully-crafted, emotional tapestry of jazz-rock instrumental fusion, solo acoustic and flat-out impact. A true, thematic album in the classic sense.
Genre: Rock: Instrumental Rock
Release Date: 

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1. Bear Divide
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2:33 $0.99
2. Seven Percent Grade
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5:31 $0.99
3. Supermarket People
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7:12 $0.99
4. Elate
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1:32 $0.99
5. Get Things Done
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7:35 $0.99
6. Backwoods
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3:37 $0.99
7. Bite
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3:54 $0.99
8. Eighteen Weeks
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7:39 $0.99
9. Projectile
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1:35 $0.99
10. Wildflower
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4:49 $0.99
11. No
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4:12 $0.99
12. See You Next Tuesday
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4:11 $0.99
13. View
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5:49 $0.99
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ABOUT THIS ALBUM


Album Notes
Long known as a uniquely talented yet tasteful hired gun bassist for the more adventurous rock guitarists of recent times (Mike Keneally, Steve Vai, Dweezil Zappa, Wayne Kramer), Bryan Beller ventures out on his own with his debut solo album, View.

Those familiar with his main body of work - nine years, five albums and countless tours with former Frank Zappa guitarist Mike Keneally - are well aware of his ability to navigate the complex, sometimes impossibly dense forms and styles present in Keneally's work...all with the polish, simplicity and accessibility one might expect from a pop bassline. Both a repeat feature subject and three-year columnist for Bass Player Magazine, Beller has long drawn the attention of music fans with a discriminating taste for high-caliber playing.

But far from aspiring to bass heroism, Beller instead builds a carefully crafted emotional tapestry of interweaving themes and styles - a true album in the old-fashioned sense. Drawing on influences as disparate as John Scofield and Rage Against The Machine, Michael Landau and Pink Floyd, Nine Inch Nails and his mentor, Mike Keneally, the resulting body of work runs the gamut from hardcore jazz/rock to vocal pop to world beat while somehow staying thematically intact, all the while displaying equal parts density and sensitivity, melody and dissonance, tranquility and furious release.

Musicians include guitarists Mike Keneally, Rick Musallam (Ben Taylor Band), Griff Peters and Yogi; drummers Toss Panos (Toy Matinee, Steve Vai) and Joe Travers (Dweezil Zappa, Lisa Loeb).

"Just when you thought Beller couldn't possibly be good at another thing, he releases a solo album so good it makes you wonder why he bothered doing anything else...View shows how terrific Beller is as a bassist, but it also establishes his real musical talent as a writer. It's a thrill to witness an artist like Beller find his voice with such a self-assured debut." - Bill Leigh, Bass Player Magazine

"Seven Percent Grade shows that charging fingerstyle fusion is as comfortable for [Beller] as a fine rock riff...and both "Bite" and "See You Next Tuesday" show he can rock with the best....Inventive solo pieces such as "Elate" & "No" show that Beller isn't going to fall into any clichés either. Inventive and creative, View end[s] up as a complete and compelling album, which I'm still enjoying right now." - Adrian Ashton, Bass Guitar Magazine (U.K.)

"Bryan is one of those bass players who just knows how to put the right note in the right place at the right time...monster playing and good vibes." - Michael Manring (solo artist, Attention Deficit)

"A unique blend of solid old school playing with modern sensibility and lots of edge." - Andy West (Dixie Dregs)

"Every expectation you may have about this album is going to be blown clear out of the water when you hear it. It's really, really good, unique and intricate and ballsy and beautifully performed." - Mike Keneally

Find out much, much more at www.bryanbeller.com


Reviews


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liam tierney

View
what can be said about this body of work? I guess all I can say is if you have an ass and you understand what music is then this gift of song will shred your ass. thanks Beller and all involved, waiting for more..... Liam T

LassM


This is awesome fusion; not to slick, flirting with heavier stuff, melodies, weird enough to make sense - in the early 70:th there was a label called JazzRock ( Mclaughlin, Beck, Clarke etc ), thats the vibes that comes to my mind

René

music with a broad view on jazzrock
Both title and cover of View, the solo-debut from Bryan Beller are perfectly chosen. You see, the CD displays Beller’s versatile and broad vision on jazz-rock, on which his background (he played amongst others with Mike Keneally and James Labrie’s Mullmuzzler) certainly has been of influence. View contains, next to tasty whipping on fusion-tacks more or less in the raw seventies-style, with leading roles for the guitar-work of Rick Musallam, Griff Peters and Keneally, subtle progressive pieces, with amongst others a suddenly turning up string-trio, and beautiful ballads, in which the bassist also shows his skills on keyboards. In the sung tracks Bite and Projectile the company also proves that the grunge-style lends itself very well to be played in a jazz-rock manner. Finally View contains the almost inevitable bass-solo-tracks; four times Beller takes the listener with him to the lower regions, from which is proven that he has integrated his influences (amongst others Michael Manring, Stanley Clarke and John Patitucci, from whom he covered Backwoods) very well into an own sound. By the way, the music for this album has been recorded by no one less than Nick D’Virgilio and although he can’t be admired from behind the drums this time (that seat is being taken by Joe Travers and Toss Panos), he makes himself heard as one of the background-vocalists in Bite.

Joe St. Amand

Satisfied Customer!!
For the musically adventurous listener interested in life beyond top 40, Bryan Beller's debut solo album View provides a serious alternative to alternative.

Those familiar with Bryan Beller will know that he's an entirely accomplished bass player, having been involved in some of the most challenging and origional music being made today, as a sideman to Mike Keneally and various other artists. Check out his website, http://www.bryanbeller.com/ for more details.

Naturally, View has some excellent bass playing on it, but it's a treat to hear that Bryan's songwriting skills are mature enough to extend beyond the bass. This album features a wonderful host of dangerously talented studio musicians to help flesh things out in that respect.

The diversity of the music on this disc is noteable - from quieter solo acoustic and electric bass compositions (Bear Divide, Elate, Backwoods, No) to more raucous jazz fusion arrangements (Seven Percent Grade, Supermarket People, Get Things Done, See You Next Tuesday) to more delicate band arrangements (Eighteen Weeks, View) to the almost-but-not-quite-Steely Dan-esque song (Wildflower), to heavier alternativesque rock tunes (Bite, Projectile). While most of the disc is instrumental, there are some vocal tunes (Bite, Projectile, Wildflower).

We knew that Bryan can play (viciously, if necessary), but now it seems that he's an artist in his own right. View is a tastefully written professional quality recording with top notch musicianship. Personally, I'd rate this album as a 13. I'm not sure what the scale is, or what the rating actually means - perhaps it's simply the number of tracks on the disc.

Chris

A solid and interesting CD
I am a keen bass player and was I not disappointed with this album. Some great momnets on there with excellent musicanship from all those involved. An album I will definetly spend some time listening to.

Gregory Winer

Breath of fresh air.
With great hooks and grooves, I'm happy to be listening to this CD full of fresh progressive music injected with a lot of emotion and sensitivity. Very inspiring!

Terrence


I finally got around to picking up View and I am massively impressed! What a fun album! What a trip! Personal fave track might be Eighteen Weeks, but that's only after a few spins. A fine first outing from a very talented musician. For additional comments see everyone else's review!

Vivian

Imagine a personal musical odyssey with geography & passion
I love the talented musicians working the tunes with energy and in-your-face creativity while all the time staying in the major groove. The showmanship does not beat me over the head with stunts and hostile competitiveness like many albums with several soloists, but delights me with rhythms and sounds that tell Bryan's story. Then, after 12 POWERFUL tracks of flamboyant artistry comes the gift: beautiful, aching clarity of the guitar by Griff Peters on the last and title track, a part that most soloists would use for self-agrandisement, but which here is played as true as the sun, stars, and moon of gorgeous nature! A perfect conclusion for Beller's VIEW!

Mr. Potato Head

Stunning Rock Fusion with awesome tone!
I love The Mike Keneally Band. So I bought this CD by the Keneally's bassist because I thought it would be "interesting." I was unprepared for the mind blowing journey Beller has in store on View. Unparalleled musicianship is an understatement in describing this CD. And the guys you've heard of (Keneally on keyboards, Joe Travers on drums, Beller) give you everything you'd expect and more. But its the guys you may not have heard of that really knock you socks off -- Griff Peters and Wes Wehmuller, guitar and bass respectively. Beller said in his live performance of View that Wehmuller is a guy that makes Beller wish he played a different instrument so that he (Beller) could play with him (Wehmuller) -- that about sums it up. The bass playing on this record is, as expected, compelling. The guitar tone contributed by Peters is very special -- not "super fast" shredder material -- just unbelievable tone and an awesome sense of restraint and power (Hello, David Gilmour!) Every track is a stand out but for my money Get Things Done and View are just about the finest musical pieces that I've ever heard. Keneally "shredding" the keys on Seven Percent Grade ain't too shabby either. To me, Beller is like the best of Stanley Clarke -- phat and driving rock/fusion (and no cheesy psuedo-funk vocals either). Just one more thing -- if you are ever in the fortunate position to see Beller and this band play live (either on the same bill with the Mike Keneally Band or alone), rush to the venue and camp for good seats. Unless you don't want your mind blown!

feralpup

great music Im impressed!
Awesome music, great bass playing. I will listen to this music for a long time to come. I was impressed with every song I listend to, Bryan Beller is not bad!
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