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pix New Artists For April-May, 2006 pix
pix pix Uncovering Guitar Potential  

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Bernie Devins

The Guitar As Voice

A common problem. If you don't sing, how can you properly enhance the music you are writing? Illinois guitarist Bernie Devins solved the problem by thinking of his guitar as a voice, inspired by the Joe Satriani tune, "The Crush Of Love". He submitted a six song instrumental hard rock CD-R filled with tunes from an upcoming CD, which will be called You Axed For It, You Got It. Doing it all himself, Devins' stripped-down production is based around Cubase SX3 and BFD drums, but he is directing the audience to his guitar anyway, not the underlying instruments. Tracks such as "Hand Over Fist" and "DoubleDown" are driving numbers aimed at the six-string fanatics, whereas "Hear How I Feel About You" is ballad tempo number featuring harmonized lead lines and a trend-defying, immaculate solo. Suggestions might be to ditch the BFD drums in favor of something live (material this heavy demands it), and get outside help with the mixing and mastering.

alb Bernie has been playing guitar since he was 13 years old, and always as hobby or side interest. He played in cover bands as a young adult, but in his family, full time work always came first. Bernie started recording when there just wasn't enough time in the day to play, giving him a musical outlet and time to be uniquely creative. He has attempted collaborations with other musicians, but found that the only way to creating the feelings he was after in the songs was to do it solo. Bernie records on a Mac G5, with his PRS Swamp Ash guitar and a Fernandez 3 pickup guitar with sustainer and Floyd Rose. He starts out with simple chord progressions recorded with a clean sound, and then adds new parts with a new guitar voice. Basically he is writing his material on the fly, keeping an open mind on adding new parts to enhance the song.

His upcoming CD, You Axed For It, You Got It, is scheduled for a June 2006 release.

MP3 Songs
Hand Over Fist

Contact Information
Bernie Devins
225 Somerset Dr.
Sugar Grove, IL 60554
United States

E-mail: Bernie Devins
Web site: www.audiostreet.net/berniedevins

Nick Johnston

Just Don't Call It Shred

Canadian axemeister Nick Johnston's CD-R, False Step, is going after the NPM (notes per minute) crown in a big way. This 18-year-old has some serious chops going for him, influenced by a host of Shrapnel shredders, including the amazing Paul Gilbert. Maybe the six to eight hours a day of practice had something to do with it - but don't call Johnston a shredder. He's expressed distaste for the term, feeling it means that a musician potentially loses credibility as a well-rounded musician. So Johnston isn't shredding when his fingers are a blur and solos are ripping, snorting, and flying past your ears at Mach 5... uh, he's just, uh, playing really, really fast. But not shredding, 'cause that would be bad. Well, if you're into shred, I think you'll like it anyway... even if it isn't shred.

pic Nick started playing guitar when he was 13. He first learned songs by Metallica and Nirvana and jammed with a band in his basement. Nick then discovered Yngwie Malmsteen, Paul Gilbert, Jason Becker and the rest of the stable of Shrapnel artists, which motivated his practice sessions immensely. At 16, he played a school show for more than 700 people, which inspired him as well. Nick then hooked up with guitar teacher Adrian Raso, who pushed his playing to new levels, and found more to learn from recordings by players such as Greg Howe and Brett Garsed. This spurred him on to begin the six to eight hour practice sessions. Buying a 16 track recorder has led him to where he is today - writing music like crazy, and making plans for the future.

Johnston will soon be attending a school in Toronto for sound engineering, and hopes to open his own studio some day. He would also love to work creating music for video games and movies. Johnston is also open to creating a band.

MP3 Songs
False Step
Assassinated While Assassinating

Contact Information
Nick Johnston
176 Dunbar Street
Rockwood, ON N0B 2KO

E-mail: Nick Johnston

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