Exposé Online banner

Flyin' Ryan Brothers — Blue Marble
(Ryanetics Music 7-1028, 2005, CD)

by Paul Hightower, Published 2006-05-01

Blue Marble Cover art

The Ryan brothers, Jimmy and Johnny, have been a fixture of the Chicago music scene since the 70s when they were members of competing local bands. In recent years the two have joined forces to bring their dual lead guitar-slinging act to the masses. This is their fourth release, though it continues the approach set out in previous albums of highlighting the virtuoso abilities of the siblings within a variety of stylistic settings. The Ryans prove that they’re plugged into current events when they inject an arabesque flair into the rock guitar pieces “Baghdad” and “Gaza” while “The Road to Galway” delves into Irish jigs and a more acoustic-based sound. One will hear nods to Steve Vai and Joe Satriani as well as Brian May within their playing, though the influence the Ryans more readily fess up to is Wishbone Ash. This appears most overtly in the closer “Blowin’ Free 2005,” a lively tribute to their heroes. This is also the only song to feature any singing and the brothers prove themselves just as capable here as with their guitar pyrotechnics. Overall there’s a maturity and confidence in the thirteen tracks that compares favorably to Steve Morse’s recent outings, even though the Ryans don’t go for Morse’s monster level of guitar heroics. Exposé readers may be interested to know that William Kopecky lends his considerable skill to the album and it’s nice to hear him in a supporting role along with drummers Johnny Mrozek and Bob Behnke. Recommended.


Filed under: New releases, Issue 33, 2005 releases

Related artist(s): Flyin' Ryan Brothers

Latest news

2019-03-03
Seaprog 2019 Lineup Almost Complete – The Seaprog festival in Seattle is scheduled for June 7-9 this year, and they've announced their lineup of performers. The revitalized Trettioåriga Kriget will cap Friday night, perennial favorites Marbin are on Saturday, and District 97 will finish off the fest on Sunday night. In support, they've booked a stellar variety of artists from the Northwest and around the world, including EchoTest, Markus Reuter and Trey Gunn, and the live debut of the amazing Troot project. » Read more

2019-02-21
You Can Be Part of an Ambient Electronic Project – The Gesture of History is a new electronic project put together by Sam Rosenthal of Black Tape for a Blue Girl, Steve Roach, and violist Sam Shadow. The music started as an instrumental track Rosenthal was working on for a Black Tape album, but took on a life of its own and demanded further enhancements. The majority of the funds raised will go to manufacturing costs for LP and CD editions, as well as other items as detailed on the Kickstarter page. » Read more

2019-01-31
Keyboardist Ingo Bischof R.I.P. – Keyboard player Ingo Bischof, best known as the longtime keyboard player of German band Kraan, passed away on January 29th, 2019. Bischof was born January 2, 1951 in Berlin-Kreuzberg and joined Kraan in 1975. » Read more

2019-01-11
Jazz Composer Mark Lomax, II Releases Epic 12CD Set – In addition to being a fine jazz drummer, Dr. Mark Lomax, II is a composer in residence at Ohio State University, where he has been very busy on the compositional front. The year 2019 is the 400th anniversary of the arrival of the first ship bringing African slaves to North America, and in commemoration of this, Lomax has produced 400: An Afrikan Epic, a 12 volume set of CDs featuring a variety of different musical ensembles. » Read more

2019-01-02
Chicago-Based Surabhi Ensemble Tours the World in January – Surabhi Ensemble was formed more than a decade ago in Chicago with the aim of bringing together musicians from varying traditions to make music. Saraswathi Ranganathan, who plays veena, assembled a cast that includes Arabic oud, Spanish guitar, and percussion from Africa and India. This month, the group will be sharing their sounds with concert-goers in Southeast Asia, Europe, and Africa. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Steve Roach - Arc of Passion – "Passion" is one of those loaded words. For instance, though it dealt with a fictional account of the life and death of Jesus of Nazareth, Martin Scorcese’s film Passion (for which Peter Gabriel...  (2009) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues