METAL OBSERVER – “Before my eyes” Review-
Written by: Eric Provenza – Metal Observer - March 30, 2008
Ah, it’s not every day I get a chance to review an album like this. J.C. CINEL is an Italian independent songwriter delivering a fresh sound, fusing classic Rock with American-style Folk and the Blues. The result is pretty authentic: think TOM PETTY AND THE HEARTBREAKERS style Rock but a bit mellower in a NEIL YOUNG vein with a bit of world music influence and you’ve got merely an intimation of what’s in store.
“Before My Eyes” is not the first album J.C. has put out; in fact, he’s been releasing music through various groups since 1995. It’s not surprising, then, that the album is very focused and very well made. Acoustic guitars are the backbone of the album, but the album gains a lot of substance from the layering of additional instruments. Electric guitar solos, bottleneck slide, keyboards; even some mean harmonica playing can be found as the album progresses.
Vocally, J.C. CINEL is as talented as he is on guitar. Nothing extreme to be found on here (this is mellow stuff, after all), but he has quite a knack for soothing harmony. On a side note, his voice kind of reminds me of what Tony Kakko might sound like if he sung in a band like this. But anyway, there’s a detectable honesty in his voice which adds to the integrity of the songs. This is key for Independent Rock like this, where the vocals are one of the primary focuses. Surefire winners include “Ships In The Wind,” “Sweet Dream,” and “What I See,” though the rest are quite good as well.
Overall, I’d have preferred a bit more of an edgy guitar presence, but the sound on “Before My Eyes” is the sound that J.C. set out to create. Not usually my cup of tea, but I certainly know talent when I hear it.