Gary Lucas   reviews  
Downtown Music Gallery Newsletter, October 2013

GARY LUCAS - Cinefantastique (Northern Spy 043; USA)

This is an amazing solo guitar offering that has been a long time in coming. Mr. Lucas has been one of Downtown's must exciting and creative guitarists for more than two decades, often playing solo guitar(s) performances that always knock his audiences out. Lucas has also been a longtime film fanatic who went on to play live and recorded soundtrack music for many flicks throughout his long career. 'The Golem', 'The Edge of Heaven' which was inspired by female Chinese singers/actresses and more recently: Federico Garcia Lorca's "La Casa de Bernarda Alba" are just a few of the soundtracks that Lucas has provided music for.

For this fabulous disc, Mr. Lucas takes us on a journey around the world and through time, playing the music of sixteen film, TV and cartoon composers, from 1919 to 2001. He selectively chooses composers both well known: Burt Bacharach, Richard Rogers, George Gershwin & Nina Rota to lesser knowns. Mr. Lucas composed a couple of these pieces himself and the entire disc fits together into a compelling mosaic. What I dig most about this disc is that it uses the same magic: which great soundtracks utilize by sneaking into our memories, no matter how good or bad a certain film is and painting a picture in our minds. Listening to Gary perform each of these songs evokes a kaleidoscope memories and feelings. Mr. Lucas plays both acoustic and electric guitars, with and without devices, just what is needed for each piece. It doesn't matter if I've seen the films or have heard any of these songs before, each one has a way of transporting us somewhere else. This disc is some 76+ minutes long and by the end I did feel as if I had been around the world (in 80 days), which is of course the name of the final song here. 'Cinefantastique' is a wonderful treasure chest of superb cinematic jewels.

—Bruce Lee Gallanter, DMG