Rating :   Five stars out of five (my highest rating!)
If you love guitar, it doesn't get any better than this!!!!!

Do you like guitar solos?  Do you listen to Joe Satriani or Steve Vai and wish you could play like them?  Do you think a good guitar player must possess superior technique along with unique chops and an identifiable sound?  Well, look no further, you have just found your next guitar hero.

OK, you're saying to yourself, "self...  this Peter guy is hyping this CD way too much, who is Bumblefoot anyway?  Well, Bumblefoot is mostly Ron Thal (all guitars/vocals).  The music may remind you at first of bands like Rage Against The Machine, but with no political statements and something that Rage doesn't have at all, a sense of humor.

For those who are fans of Shrapnel Records (the home of guitar shredders) they may remember Ron Thal's first CD or the first Bumblefoot CD, but Hands is much more evolved than those two.  I don't think I've ever heard a self-produced/recorded CD that sounded as good as this one!  There's no layered reverbs and delays to hide poor vocal performances, it's all raw, cleanly recorded mayhem.

And the solos....  Oh my gawd!  Even after listening to this CD for the fiftieth time, my jaw still drops open at the bizarre, hyper-fast solos.  This isn't shred just for shred sakes, these solos go somewhere.  Never confined to pentatonic or any scale for that matter, Thal's solos are a crazy roller coaster ride that always makes you think he's going to lose control at any second only to pull it back under control at the last second.

OK, that's enough hype!  Go to Bumblefoot.com and download some MP3's and then buy it.  I promise, you won't regret this purchase!

Some comments from e-mailers have made me want to clarify statements in my review.  Please don't think that Ron is just like any other guitar shredder.  When I made comparisons to Satriani and Vai it was only in status as guitar heroes not in comparing style.  If anything, Thal has more in common with Allan Holdsworth in his smooth extended lines. Be sure to check out some of the MP3 files on the official Bumblefoot website if you don't believe me.

Chosen as "The Best Music of 2000 - Independent Artist category"

I believe that Ron Thal just may be the hottest guitar player on the planet.  This is a pretty bold statement but until you listen to this CD, you just can't understand how good he is.  It's not just technique, it's bizarre songwriting that is fun to listen to.  This is a must buy for guitarists and fans of heavy music.  Bumblefoot just released a new CD so stay tuned for a full review!