NEW VIDEO ON DEAN GUITARS HOME PAGE:
Special thanks to Mike Varney for the great write up in the May 2006 issue of Guitar Player Magazine.
“Johansson has a great feel and some incredible chops played within strong compositions. In addition to her excellent phrasing and strong vibrato, Johansson is an extremely impressive speed picker.” Mike Varney - Guitar Player Magazine
Thanks to Peter Schoonooghe at Rock Report for the following review:
Being a fan of everything that even remotely reeks of '80's melodic rock there's one particular genre that although it reached its peak during rock's golden era, was never able to fully sink its claws into me: instrumental guitar music.
That doesn't mean I never spent any time listening to albums from said genre but even if I did go out and purchase a disc, it usually ended up collecting dust after a mere 2 or 3 spins and only a few were able to get my seal of approval. Like Vinnie Moore's "Mind's Eye", Joe Satriani's "Surfing With The Alien" and Steve Vai's "Passion And Warfare".
And why is it that those 3 were given thumbs up by yours truly? Well, quite simply because the music on said discs was played with a lot of emotion and held an array of melodies that were easily hummable and possessed the quality of lodging themselves in your brain. And that brings us nicely to Katrina Johansson who has recently released her first ever EP through Michael Angelo Batio's MACE records. The 4 cuts on this EP have the exact same qualities-although not all to the same extent-I mentioned earlier and therefore I think they will appeal not only to guitar freaks but regular rock fans as well.
Opening number "Driven" has a very Satriani-like feel to it with some very tasty guitar picking from miss Johansson. For the biggest part it's a mid tempo track with a beautiful melody but about 1 minute before reaching the end Katrina picks up the tempo and starts shredding away. That definitely puts the spotlight on her technical skills but I would rather have seen the song end in a melody fade out.
Up next is "K-9 Lullaby" which had me thinking it would sound anything but like a lullaby based on the intro. Katrina however quickly cuts in with a melody that wouldn't have been out of place on the aforementioned Steve Vai opus. This cut highlights her ability to combine melody with technical skills.
"Intuition" is built around a more traditional '80's melodic rock riff with some serious shredding on top while "Daredevil" has the most song-orientated structure with Fates Warning/Crimson Glory inspired melodies and guitar playing albeit a bit more over the top.
What more can I say? Since I'm not well-grounded in this here musical genre my only advise to you is to check out Kartina's musical exploits yourself. She's obviously talented and deserves to be heard. (PS)
Thanks to Dean Guitars for putting me on the home page of their website. I feel like a real rock star! www.deanguitars.com
Thanks to MrMudPuppy for the very kind and creative review of my EP! You can read it at: MrMudPuppy's Metal Mud Puddle
Special thanks to Elliott at Dean Guitars for the beautiful new tobacco sunburst 79 ML!!!!!
Thanks to everyone for your support. The response to my E.P. has been overwhelming. It feels good to be appreciated. Keep the emails coming!
Thanks to Maximum Metal for adding me to the Metal Maidens section of their site. Check it out at: Maximum Metal
Special thanks to www.shredaholic.com for the following review:
This is a review of Katrina Johansson's new EP, released under Michael Angel Batio's record label. She wrote and produced the songs and played all lead/rhythm guitars. Brad Rohrssen, former Atlantic Recording Artist played drums on the first 3 tracks, Michael Angelo Batio played bass guitar. The EP was recorded and engineered by Michael Angelo Batio at Monster Mix Studio and Chris Djuricic at Studio One. The EP was mixed by Chris Djuricic and assisted by Michael Angelo Batio at Studio One. The fourth song was recorded and mixed by Jim Harvey and Ron Reid from Breakthrough Audio.
This is an outstanding debut EP, and this review will show you why.
Starts of with a slow melodic melody, and breaks into a different backing riff with nice phrasing of pinch harmonics, then plenty of alternate shred followed by an amazing melody. In fact the ''chorus'' melody as it sounds that follows the shred is such a great melody. Technique is spot on as well, and the melodies/riffs are matched perfectly. Plenty of other great melodies in there too, and then....double time fast sweep arpeggios!!! This part just gives you a sudden adrenaline rush and comes in timed perfect followed by plenty of alternate shred, very well constructed. Fantastic.
This song starts off with a great Satch-esque pull of section intro. Then goes into a really melodic medley!! The sense of melody is great, with each little section matching the previous perfect, and the shredding is well placed, with plenty of that Satch vibe in there. The phrasing is also excellent, particularly in the pinch harmonics executed. The alternate picking section is a joy to listen to and fits with the backing perfectly, followed by a slow melodic solo and more Satch esque style playing, but with an original touch. A joy to listen to.
Starts off with a nice little slow solo, and picks up speed up a bit with a great moderately fast melody. Then a very uplifting riff kicks in with great shredding on top of it, great I tell you! Great slow and fast melodies throughout with a really great backing riff. Some great tapping sounding licks also used in this, great sounding.
WOW!!! I am a massive fan of 80's rock/metal/shred and if you are, check this track out!!! This really does have that feel to it. Starts of with a classic 80's drum roll into a great pull of section, then falls into an amazing sounding dramatic riff, its great!!! Very emotional playing here, with great shredding inserted in the right places, bang on. The phrasing also on this song as well as the whole EP is really awesome. Great tapping used here too. This song is practically perfect, with flawless melodies and shred and a dramatic climax which fades out, its just amazing, true guitar playing at its finest, Phenomenal.
© Richard Niczyperowicz 2005
Below is a new review from www.RockReviews.info
Overall Rating: 8.0 out of 10
Music: 8.5 out of 10
Production: 7.5 out of 10
Although the instrumental rock scene reached its peak in the 80's, more and more promising instrumental guitarists seem to emerge. Unfortunately, all of these talented guitarists aren't able to get themselves a record deal, since this genre isn't that popular anymore... nonetheless, there are still some labels that sign instrumental artists, and one of them is Michael Angelo Batio's M.A.C.E. Records. Their newest find is Katrina Johansson, whose debut recording "Guitarsongs Volume 1" shows that there's always room for one more instrumental guitarist.
The music on this EP is melodic instrumental metal with some nicely varying phrasing. There are plenty of hooks that'll stay in listener's head for quite a while. That's actually one of the most intriguing qualities about Johansson's music - the melodies are really memorable. However, on occasion Johansson gets carried away with shredding, but surprisingly always finds her way back to the unforgettable melodies.
One of the biggest letdowns regarding this record is its short length... fortunately all the songs are of good quality and that compensates for the small amount of material. I'm sure Katrina Johansson will release a full-length album in the near future, and this is only a taster of things to come. She has already got herself an endorsement deal with Dean guitars, so things are really starting to look good for her.
MAGE (May 17th, 2005)