"Too Dumb Too Quit" (Self-produced)

Reviewed by Christopher J. Kelter

Just by looking at the cover of Too Old Too Rock's "Too Dumb Too Quit" I was beginning to question why I took this particular Rough Edge writing gig. Featured prominently on the cover of Too Old Too Rock's debut "Too Dumb Too Quit" is a picture of two old guys, one with a banjo and one with a guitar, "rocking out" while resting on a wooden bench with their feet on a milk  crate. And the songs titles weren't helping me out either (example: "Bingo Night At Emily's").

But, as I often find out, it's not a good idea to judge a CD by its cover (or its song titles).

The music contained on Too Old Too Rock's "Too Dumb Too Quit" is pure guitar-based instrumentals - just my kind of thing. "Too Dumb Too Quit" covers a wide swath of styles and moods. What shines through the most is the ability of the guitarist duo of Jim Reindel and Chris Hattingh to vary the tempos, styles, and moods throughout the entire disc. Occasionally, some obvious influences creep in, but I think that is the nature of instrumentals - it's damn near impossible to escape one's influences especially when there aren't any vocals to add to the overall experience. Not that I'm complaining or anything.

"Shuffleboard Champs" is a perfect intro to Too Old Too Rock - this up-tempo number is filled with burning energy. "Arthritic Shredfest" is like a Vai-Van Halen crossbred, caffeinated, supercharged monster that never lets up. "Dance Of The Coffin Dodgers" and "Second Mortgage Blues" have the sort of mellow "surfing" sounds made so popular by Joe Satriani. The Michael Schenker-ism in "Pass The Geritol" pay homage to the guitar great that has influenced countless hundreds of guitar shredders. Even the sweet sounds of the bluesy Eric Johnson can be heard on the high flying "Senior Citizen Boogie."

The arrangements are just left-of-center enough to keep guitar fanatics interested at all times, but no so wacky as to lose the interest of the casual fan. The geriatric theme is a neat little curveball that kept me guessing until I'd actually plopped the CD in for a studious listen.

The biggest downfall of this recording is the drums - more often than not the drums are simply a "click track" and a very loud one at that. It's a minor detraction (and distraction), but one that needs mentioning.

At the end of these twelve tracks of guitar instrumentals you'll be impressed, not overwhelmed - and that's a good way to feel at the end of an instrumental CD.

"Too Dumb Too Quit" was produced by Too Old Too Rock. For an independent release the quality of the recording is phenomenal.

Too Old Too Rock is Jim Reindel on acoustic and electric guitars and Chris Hattingh on acoustic and electric guitars, bass, and drums.

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.


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Copyright 2006 by R. Scott Bolton. All rights reserved.
Revised: 28 Aug 2022 14:16:30 -0400 .