In 2015, I perhaps had a once in a lifetime chance to travel to Prague, Czech Republic from Texas. That trip included seeing GIRLSCHOOL, THE AGONY and HEAVY PASSION. It was also my very first write up for A&GS. My friend Jan Tesar with HEAVY PASSION introduced me to Tereza Duchlevova who was formerly with the band. She is a charming and most beautiful lady. Little did I know that Tereza was close friends with and helping to manage PETER GLAVANOV. After returning to the States, Tereza and I became acquaintances. Several months ago, the word was getting out about Peter’s album. I gave it a listen and I must say, it’s quite remarkable. I’ve always had an appreciation for talented guitarists. His album is mostly instrumental. Several of his influences are ERIC JOHNSON, ANDY TIMMONS and JOE SATRIANI, all of whom I love. Mish Mash (Self Released) is out now. After three years of dedicated work, it’s the perfect title for this CD.
GLAVANOV grew up in Bulgaria and found heavy metal as a teenager (which was forbidden there at the time). His grandfather showed him how to play the acoustic guitar and the rest is history. His first electric six string was Bulgarian made with his first amp plug in being a Russian-made radio. Innovative? Yes! That also describes much about this album. He now plays in a band called AKAGA, a famous Bulgarian band; this album is very different from what they do.
Beginning is “Winter” a very tasty and jazzy artwork with beautiful delay and a SATRIANI-like soft snow fall melody. Something you might hear off of satellite radio.The first song just really sets the mood for the whole work. “Two Faces” follows with a very soft and melodic watercolor painting of jazz and rock. If you wanted to do a slow dance with your favorite gal, this would be the tune. With lightning fast, very clean licks and the various pedal selections, this an absolute adventure.
“Brown Sugar” reminds me of something I’d listen to sitting on the porch with my eyes closed, head leaning backward, and foot tapping to the beat. The mood is just mesmerizing. “Persia (feat. Biser Ivanov)” is next. If Texas boys ERIC JOHNSON and ANDY TIMMONS got together, it might sound a bit like this. It is by far one of the best on the album. Slowing it way down is “Lazy”,a bluesy number that makes your mind to walk along the Mississippi River at dusk in a cool breeze. Very tasty keyboard enhances this one. Taking a trip down STEVIE RAY VAUGHAN lane is “Good Duke”. I can just picture a starburst Fender in my mind’s eye. Great SRV technique. “Tainstvena Vselena” (English translation being “Mysterious Universe”) is a cover song by Bulgarian band KLAS. It’s the only tune with vocals and GLAVANOV demonstrates his singing ability, cranks up the distortion and rocks it out.
Following is “Lame Centipede” which slows down the tempo and returns us to a jazzy keyboard feel. I’ve always secretly had a special place in my heart for the more modern jazz with a rock twist, especially when well done. Screaming at us next is “Boogie Nights,” a jazzy metal trip with a BLUE OYSTER CULT (Mirrors) and JOE SATRIANI infusion. It blew my mind; where does this end? My personal favorite on the record. Finishing everything off is “Visoko” translated as “High” a cover song by Bulgarian band FSB. This effort supremely puts this album to bed. The original is a very mellow tune and Peter gives us an extra clean electric instrumental interpretation of the song. Wow, tastefully done.
Mish Mash by PETER GLAVANOV is a great way to start off 2017. I’m most grateful to Peter and Tereza for their assistance with background information and adding a personal touch to this review. I truly encourage our readers who really appreciate technical, classy songwriting and chromatic hallucinatory riff compilation to purchase this incredible effort. Had I reviewed this in 2016, it would have been my favorite. You can also follow Peter on Spotify with access to his album and pick it up there. Salude’
STANDOUT TRACKS: ALL OF THEM
-MARK “\M/ETAL \M/ESSIAH” EHRLICH