Gary Hoey

Bug Alley

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Bug Alley is another showcase for Gary Hoey's exceptional instrumental skills, but it falls short of being the crossover breakthrough he is capable of. Part of the problem is Hoey is more interested in playing guitar than recording an album. He hauls out classic rock chestnuts like "Black Magic Woman" and "Gotta Serve Somebody," "reinterpreting" them by making them blues-rock and hard-rock guitar workouts. Granted, his technique is frequently startling, but too often it sounds like a mutant hybrid of Joe Satriani and Stevie Ray Vaughan's worst tendencies. And both of those guitarists knew how to make albums that appealed to musicians, not just guitarists. Perhaps Hoey could learn something from his idols.

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