CD REVIEW: Pete Calacci - Other Side
By Don Sechelski - 01/27/2013 - 08:31 PM EST
Artist: Pete Calacci
Album: Other Side
Sounds Like: Boston, Beatles, John Mayer
Technical Grade: 10/10
Production/Musicianship Grade: 10/10
Commercial Value: 10/10
Overall Talent Level: 10/10
Songwriting Skills: 10/10
Performance Skill: 10/10
Best Songs: Cold Hearted Woman, Honest Man, Other Side
Chicago area rocker, Pete Calacci has released a debut album, Other Side that weaves some powerful guitar playing with melodic songs and strong vocals to create one of the best new releases Iíve heard this year. This self-produced venture features Pete on all guitars and percussion assisted by Bob Sherman and Kelly Skaggs on some backing vocals and Chris Wander on keyboards on one song.
Other Side opens with a rocker, Cold Hearted Woman, blasting power chords and beefy guitar licks against a solid rhythm. ďA cold hearted woman ainít ever had enough.Ē This tune had me moving in my chair right away. When Pete hits the solo, his guitar rings, screams, and howls before he slides into a melodic bridge. The second tune, Secret, continues the power chord attack but the sweet melody and vocal harmonies are Beatle-esque. This is getting better song by song.
Fear is a departure from the power chord attack with a more progressive sound and rhythm. A funky bass line spars with a frenetic drum line. Minor chords soften the tone and Peteís vocal is perfect. When he brings out the lead guitar, it soars. Twin guitar lines send the song into the stratosphere. This is a great pop ballad. There are some excellent songs on Other Side and head turning guitar playing. The bluesy ballad, Through You, stands out. Pete is a versatile songwriter and player as evidenced by his slide and acoustic work on Honest Man, another standout tune. The funky title tune, Other Side, made me think of blues master Elvin Bishop, no small compliment.
Other Side is an auspicious first release. Pete Calacci has established himself as a strong songwriter and guitarist to be reckoned with. His straight ahead style and versatility are refreshing. The songs stand alone as great tunes, the production is solid, and Peteís guitar work is dead on. Pete is currently touring the Midwest around Chicago and Northern Indiana but this CD should open new doors. You should check out Other Side by Pete Calacci. Itís a great album.
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