Sound — 10
I first discovered Doyle Dykes around two years ago. I'd seen him mentioned in various guitar magazines as one of 'the greatest acoustic guitar players in the world', but not actually gone to the trouble to listen to any of his stuff. When I heard he was going to a guitar shop (PMT) in Birmingham to do a promotional show for Taylor, I thought I'd go along to suss him out. And boy, was I glad to have gone. Doyle Dykes is one of the most mesmerising guitar players to watch. His technique is completely flawless and breath-taking. He uses pretty much every trick in the acoustic-guitar-playing book, such as chiming, harping, and his 'trademarked' "bending behind the nut". He blends them all together so fantastically, making the most incredible sounds. After his performance, I was so blown away that I simply had to buy a CD, so I bought "Chameleon". On the way home, I listened to the CD all the way through and then again and again in the months to follow. I don't think he seems to be quite as good on the record as he was live, but I'm sure that's only because you can't see what he's doing! Nonetheless, the CD is fantastic. He has lots of original acoustic guitar instrumental pieces, plus "U2 Medley" and "Coldplay Medley", both of witch include various U2 and Coldplay songs adapted to acoustic guitar to sound incredible. An incredible "While My Guitar Gently Weeps" is also on the CD, which is another mind-blower. When playing acoustic guitar, I tend to favour a 'bass-y' sound for excessive strumming, though Doyle has a very 'treble-y' sound for his fingerpicking, which sounds simply superb, and even sounds great when strumming.
Lyrics — 9
Lyrics only feature on one song; "Be Still", and they are, suffice to say, very average. Doyle's voice isn't superb, (though I'm not saying he can't sing! ) but his guitar-playing makes up for that in all the other songs! To avoid bringing down the overall rating, I'm giving lyrics a '9', because it's a pity to bring down the tone of a fantastic CD.
Overall Impression — 10
Overall, this album is brilliant, and will have you listening for months on end. The amazement of a guitarist such as Doyle Dykes is that aspiring guitarists (like myself) know that we will probably never be as good as he is. That is one of the attractions of listening to his music. "U2 Medley" is probably the best song on the album, though they are all very good (with the possible exception of "Be Still"). He's perfect for anybody that likes acoustic guitar, and I recommend that you take a look into him if you've never heard of him before! His incredible guitar skills will leave you wanting more!