Band: Julien Martinoia
CD Title: The Insight
Label: Independent Release (2016)
Rating: Good Effort 2/5
This is the fourth studio recording, not counting a few EPs for French composer and performer Julien Martinoia. The Insight features ten compositions that clock in at one-hour of music. Since his first studio effort in 2004, Matinoia has demonstrated an ability to work is a number of different genres from Pop to Prog Metal. The Insight tends to fall mostly in the Progressive Rock category with perhaps just a slight nod to some crunchy guitar accents. Most of these songs are just over six-minutes each and display a basic heavy rock foundation that is at times tempered and then at other times bolstered. This basic rock foundation is then embellished in spots with a keyboard line or other type of musical change-up. That said the instrument of choice here is guitar leaving the keyboards to offer up piano introductions or layers of sound and textural support. These compositions are not overly complex by any means, but they do weave in and out of different sound segments or musical riffs and motifs. It must be said there are many really nice musical ideas sprinkled throughout the album as well as some very nice musical arrangements with some very unique sound bites. If there is a weak link to everything here it tends to be on the vocal side. Martinoia is not the strongest of singers. Thereís no question he brings a passion and expressiveness but there are times where he overreaches and comes up short on the vocal side. Itís a tough thing and Iím sure it will improve but at this point itís not up to the standard heís setting on the musical side. All in all, what can I say, this is a good effort that has a load of great, well executed musical ideas. Martinoia is certainly someone to keep an eye on for future releases.