The Rob Tognoni Band
Live at the Twilight
Review Published Nov 20, 1999
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EB Rating - 4.5
- Everlasting Lovin' Boy
- Dark Angel
- Crossword Blues
- Jim Beam Blues
- Keep Your Head Above Water
- Lil' Melody
- Roosevelt & Ira Lee
- I Like to Dress Like Batman
- Don't Be Too Hard On Me
- The Sinner
- Itty Bitty Mama
- Bad Girl
- Black Is White
- My Acid Is Kickin' In
The Rob Tognoni Band is a high energy band based in Australia. While the band
bills itself as a blues-rock band, the flavor is more of a classic rock style with a tinge of blues. The band's leader cites
Jimi Hendrix, B.B. King, and fellow countrymen AC/DC as some of his main influences. Of these, I hear the AC/DC
influence the strongest. Occasionally thoughout the CD, I hear strong blues-rock style lead riffs, as well as song
rhythms that remind me of AC/DC, a band I always felt was mis-categorized as a heavy metal band.
Tognoni's guitar is powerful, crisp and animated. Some really nice Wah-Wah
is featured ocasionally. I've always been partial to the wah-wah effect, and enjoy Tognoni's
use of this device. Although there aren't any extraordinary qualities to Tognoni's vocals, he does sing quite well
and his vocal style suites his music. An artist with songwriting talent as well, Tognoni wrote twelve of the
sixteen songs on the CD.
There is only one full blown blues tune on the CD, Crossword Blues,
which was written by yet another strong Australian blues guitarist, Dave Hole.
This is a powerful, straight-up hard blues song and shows without a doubt that Tognoni has blues in his soul.
There are three or four others tunes that fall into the blues-rock category. My favorites
from the CD, along with Crossword Blues, are I Like To Dress Like Batman
and The Sinner. Both are blues-rock songs and feature wah-wah driven guitar.
The balance of the CD has a distinct "Classic Rock" feel to it, but throughout the CD
Tognoni's guitar leads keep the blues in mind.
Definitely not for the blues purist, this CD is more suited to those who relate to the
connection between blues and early rock, and enjoy a good dose of quality guitar playing.
Being a bit more advanced in years than some of the EB regulars, I have
witnessed nearly the entire evolution of electric blues music. I am also a fan of the
guitar driven "classic rock" music of the 70's. Most of my guitar heros have either
lost their passion for playing or have died from unnatural causes. In these present
days, rarely does a player come along who captures my ear as did some of the founding
fathers. However, Rob Tognoni is such a player. His playing is both precise
yet powerful. The band is talented and tight. The CD is on the Provogue label, and
is therefore well engineered. In this recording, you can hear both the Ghost of
Classic Rock Past along with the cutting edge of the future. Quite simply, Rob Tognoni
is one of the best kept secrets of blues/rock music. With the release of "Live at the
Twilight", he is going to become much better known soon.
Tom - 11/24/99