Tony Pica

Schism and Blues

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Tony Pica deserves a nod for the amusing pun of the album title. Unfortunately, that's the only flash of wit to be found on the second album by the Michigan-based guitarist, an entirely competent musician given to long solos. Schism and Blues would be lightweight but tolerable if it were an instrumental jam album. Unfortunately, Pica's songwriting and singing aren't up to his instrumental talents, which means that Schism and Blues is burdened with overlong, plodding losers like the opening "What Goes Up" (and those who guessed that the next line is "Must come down," and that this is the entire chorus, are entirely correct) and "Come and Get Some" (no lyrical explanation necessary), sung in a whiny approximation of a "soul man" voice. This all goes on for 16 seemingly endless songs, which is at least half a dozen too many. Even the most die-hard fans of white-boy blooze-rock will get tired of Schism and Blues by its end.

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