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Finally after three years, one of my favourite guitar players releases another solo album, once again with an awesome line-up on the album. Behind the drum kit is the great Virgil Donati and on the bass is his bandmate from Angra, Felipe Andreoli. The album is called “Sound Of Innocence” and contains ten tracks. They are really nine ordinary tracks, because the first track “Awakening Prelude” is a forty second intro to the album. The album moves in the veins of instrumental rock but with latin rhythms and harmonies and creates a unique style of instrumental guitar oriented music. I think this album -compared to the previous albums- has a little less of these South American influences and it’s more straight rock/metal. It has some very memorable tracks like “Humming” or “Conflicted” .

What I like about Kiko Loureiro is that he isn’t afraid to use lot of space in his melodies and not humble his tracks with millions of notes without purpose. But this is maybe something he inherited from his Brazilian background and also departs him from many other “shred” guitar players. The track “El Guajiro” shows us exactly the roots of Kiko. Latin percussion instruments and rhythms and over this rhythms great metal guitar sections. I don’t remember any other guitar player who fuses latin with metal music and this is why this man is so unique. And if you never have heard this mix before, this is the track to listen to. Another great track on the album is “The Hymn”, the main theme of the track has Kiko’s signature staccato harmonized guitar parts creating a layered rhythmic motif sitting underneath and he uses his Whammy bar for the lead part highlighting his Jeff Beck influence. On the track “Mãe D’Água” we can hear a weird latin string instrument playing an intro that Kiko emulates with his distorted guitar which sounds really cool as a result really. This is a more relaxing track with half time groove and some emotive playing from Kiko.

This album shows some very mature guitar playing from Kiko Louriero who certainly didn’t set out to show off his guitar skills, but rather craft an album that takes you on a unique musical journey displaying Kiko’s rock, metal and Brazilian influences. At the same time though, his guitar playing is unintentionally stunning, you only have to listen to the main chorus of “Twisted Horizon” to hear how incredible Kiko’s technique is, it is very hard to begin writing a melody that jumps all over the fretboard like that and yet sounds so musical. Kiko seems to have mastered all guitar techniques so that he can use them in very creative ways which make him quite hard to categorise. If you enjoy instrumental guitar whether it is rock, metal or fusion, Kiko Loureiro fuses many styles together and in the process has delivered a very enjoyable album.

Track List Line Up
01. Awakening Prelude
02. Gray Stone Gateway
03. Conflicted
04. Reflective
05. El Guajiro
06. Ray Of Life
07. The Hymn
08. Mae D’Agua
09. Twisted Horizon
10. A Perfect Rhyme
Kiko Loureiro: Guitars
Felipe Andreoli: Bass
Virgil Donati: Drums