"Brother From Another Mother" (Guitar Nine)

Reviewed by R. Scott Bolton

Instrumental albums can be a bitch to review, especially guitar albums. The problem is that, no matter how many tricks the axe-slinger has up his sleeve, they're tricks that someone else has probably done before them. That's not necessarily a bad thing - rock'n'roll is nothing if not cannibalistic - but when it comes to telling others about the music, describing instrumental work rather than standard song structure often presents a challenge.

Although there are some vocals on Andy Martin's "Brother From Another Brother" (on that very track, as a matter of fact, provided beautifully by Scott Childress), the majority of the CD is instrumental work. Regardless, it's a joyful listen from beginning to end, with hard rocking ragers ("Brother From Another Planet," "Seen It All, Had Enough") to poignant tales of a mother's love and encouragement ("Something From Above," "Guided By Grace.")

What makes Martin's work stand out above others isn't easy to pin down. Obviously, he's a master musician. His fretwork here is crystal clear and as sharp as it comes. And he sails from one style to another effortlessly. He can shred when he needs to but knows when to show restraint as well. Martin's songwriting work is much fresher and atmospheric than others as well. Although it doesn't really sound like Satriani, I would compare it to some of Satch's work, wherein an entire story seems to be told through music only. Finally, the production on "Brother From Another Planet" is stellar. Producer Alex Salz obviously sees Martin's music through Martin's eyes and has captured it perfectly. "Brother From Another Planet" is one of the purest, cleanest instrumental albums I've heard.

If you love the guitar (and, if you don't, what the hell are you doing here at then Andy Martin is someone you've got to hear. Check out his website, sample some sounds, and pick up his CDs. You won't be sorry.

For more information, check out or

Rating Guide:

A classic. This record will kick your ass.

Killer. Not a classic but it will rock your world.

So-so. You've heard better.

Pretty bad. Might make a nice coaster.

Self explanatory. Just the sight of the cover makes you wanna hurl.

Back to CD Reviews Home

Back to Home

Copyright 2002 by R. Scott Bolton. All rights reserved.
Revised: 11 Sep 2022 13:59:46 -0400.