Sound — 9
Garett Spencley lets a wide variety of influences show through on his debut album, ranging from guitar virtuosos such as Steve Vai through to Santana and a few other familiar styles mixed together to create something refreshingly original. With 'Raw', you have an album that anyone with an interest in just what guitar music is all about will find both fascinating and inspirational. Whilst some solo guitarists often become repetitive through their own style, Spencley doesn't restrict himself to any one type of music but instead simply seems to play what he feels without losing the recurring character of his playing. What you end up with therefore is an album with a distinctive voice which doesn't repeat itself.
Lyrics — 8
Only one song on this mainly instrumental album, Crystal Eyes has vocals. The very Cobainesque singing of Spencley help make the one vocal track something special amid a sea of instrumentation. This is certainly an area he should probably develop further in the future, but for now Crystal Eyes remains an idea of the future potential of the artist.
Overall Impression — 9
Overall this is an album for musicians. Where the casual music listener may be turned off by the emphasis on instrumentation, the majority of musicians, especially guitarists, will not be disappointed with the relaxed, yet always powerful guitar work of Garett Spencley. 'Raw' is a must have for anyone who appreciates what it is to play the guitar.