DEAN CASCIONE – Guitar Chop Shop

DEAN CASCIONE - Guitar Chop Shop
  • 9/10
    DEAN CASCIONE - Guitar Chop Shop - 9/10


Release date: April 25, 2008

User Review
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There is something about Instrumental Guitar that can’t be beat. It allows the listener to envelope oneself within the music and just concentrate on nothing else. There are several musicians out there already, most of whom are world renowned and known by all within their own community. There is plenty of room for more however and in this case there is one more-someone new to the scene or this specific type of musical genre. He is Dean Cascione…master shredder and talent extraordinaire. After listening to the new release which is also Dean’s debut, it is quite apparent that this guy is freakingly dangerous with a guitar. He was a former student of none other than another guitar freak and shredder himself, Joe Stump. That just about says it all.

Mr. Stump was voted as the 6th top shredder in the world by Guitar One Magazine and had this to say about his student. “Dean is quite a talented individual and quite an accomplished player and composer as well. He has a real nice command over the instrument and mixes his killing technique with a great musical sense and wonderfully crafted guitar tones.” That certainly says a lot about what type of playing ability and guitar sound one can expect from the Guitar Chop Shop debut.

The CD isn’t that long really with 9 tracks coming in under 28 minutes in length. Two or even three replays can occur quite easily, sometimes without even realizing it. A once over just isn’t enough or satisfying in the least-it is that good. Guitar Chop Shop has a decent amount of shredding to it if that is what you are looking for specifically. It also has an equal amount of acoustic/flamenco-style as well. If your not a huge fan of acoustic when electric is in abundance, it should be surprising to hear just how good Dean is with an acoustic guitar in his hand.

All tracks were written by Dean Cascione himself with all guitar and bass work done by Dean. Orchestration was done by Jay Menard, drum duties went to Guillaume Sylvain and keyboard arrangement by Randy Ciak. The vocals were performed by Gabriel Langelier from the Canadian Power Metal band Icewind. The CD was produced by Dean Cascione and Jay Menard. Mixed and mastered by George Bellas and Jay Menard (mastered at George Bellas Studios-USA). A lot can be said about a person by the company he keeps. Looking at these names and the people involved in the making of this debut release, it is quite apparent that Dean surrounds himself with good company.

“Alba” is a short beautiful acoustic intro. With “Molto Veloce,” Dean doesn’t waste any time showing his audience who’s boss when it comes to the 6-string. Talk about shredding attacks-this is it. “Sunrazor” is an incredibly gorgeous sounding and beautifully orchestrated acoustic number that reaches your soul and beyond. Top three material of the bunch. “Guitar Chop Shop” kind of says it all with its name. Dean brings out his 6-string again on this one and does a fair amount of shredding and other little treats to boot. It is done in a very tasteful way and doesn’t overdo it or force-feed it to his listeners. “Brother” is another acoustic number that is later re-done as the closer on the CD but with lyrics. “The Monk” is a hard-edged rocker and shredder at the same time with plenty of arpeggio runs up and down the fretboard. “Driven” has a cool, almost futuristic sound to it with an overly audible funky/bluesy/jazzy/punchy bass line. A bit different than the rest of the CD. It has an experimental, Satch-type quality about it. “Farewell” is an extremely short but strong acoustic outro. “Brother” is performed again with vocals added to the mix.

Closing on an interesting note, in a quick one-on-one with Dean, it was asked of him who some of his major influences were that attributed to his playing style or those who motivated him in becoming the talent he is today. He innocently responded with Yngwie, Joe Stump, and George Bellas-all master shredders. Interestingly enough he stated that he never really listened to or studied any Satch or Vai. Then shockingly, he admitted that he had a place in his heart for musicians such as Ace Frehley (original KISS lead guitarist). “While not the most technical player by any means, he had command over his instrument and simple but memorable leads are what worked best for him. All easily played yet hard to forget once heard like the lead into “Detroit Rock City.” There’s no ego bashing going on here.”

Guitar fanatics rejoice, there is another new CD and sound out there for you to add to your collections. Go get this one-you’ll see why!


  • George Fustos

    George was a reviewer here at Metal Express Radio. He has engineering degrees in Chemical and Electrical Engineering. He favors Metal, Rock, Hard Rock, Classic Rock, Blues, and even some Jazz and Motown (depending on the tune). He used to dabble with the bass quite some time ago. His most influential bassists are Jaco, Billy Sheehan, Stu Hamm, Geddy Lee, and John Entwistle (RIP Ox). Band-wise he's really into Rush, Tool, early Metallica, Pink Floyd (including Waters and Gilmour as solo artists), The Who, Iced Earth, Iron Maiden, Halford, Joe Satriani, certain Judas Priest, Stevie Ray Vaughan, Albert Collins (Blues guitarist), Motörhead, and a German band called Skew Siskin that Lemmy says in an interview as being "the best band out there today."

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