“Workshop” is the first solo album of Joop Wolters, which was released in 2003, but if you think that guy is new on the scene, you’re quite mistaken ! That excellent Dutch guitarist and bassist player started playing music in many well-known bands more than 10 years ago ! (I guess the names ARABESQUE or ELYSION tell you something…)
He has an impressive quantity of projects to his name and what he have accomplished till now is just terrific ! His collection of tracks of all kind is a real treasure trove and if you don’t know Joop’s music yet, you already lost too much time !! Check his websites for tons of special excerpts ! He’s a real productive guy. ;-)
“Workshop” is fully instrumental – as it’s the case for his previous release and second solo album “Speed, Traffic and Guitar Accidents” – and once again, he composed the whole thing. (Nathan v/d Wouw and Thijs Cuppen also participated on this CD). It has 9 wonderful tracks, for a total length of 33 too short minutes. But I can tell you one thing though: these 33 minutes may be short but they are rocking hard and heavy ! ;-)
“ Tibet”, “Synthology” and “Endless Love” are probably my favorite tracks on the album, even though I love all of them.
“Tibet” is a very original piece, tinged with some Asian sounds – especially at the beginning, plus between 2:18-2:25 and at the end of the song – sounds perfectly matching with the Tibetan culture. It’s really a GREAT one ! :-O
“Synthology” is – for me – the coolest track for the guitars !!!! It’s
C-O-M-P-L-E-T-E-L-Y A-W-E-S-T-R-U-C-K-I-N-G !!!! I don’t know HOW HE DOES to play SO FAST !!!! :-O It’s the craziest one, the greatest one !
There is also “Cross My Heart” and “Endless Love”, which are sweet ballads, some of the greatest instrumental pieces I’ve heard on Joop’s albums. They’re very…romantic, I’d even say sensual.
Then, along with “Synthology”, there are “I Don’t Know” and “Headstart”, which are pretty among the heaviest tracks on “Workshop” in my opinion. There is full of crazy guitars – if you know Joop’s style, you’ll know what I mean, haha – that I couldn’t not even dream playing even if I were a good guitarist. ;-)
Finally, I think “Workshop” is really AS GREAT to listen to as “Speed, Traffic and Guitar Accidents”, simply shorter. It’s quite the same type of music: a good blend of jazzy, funky, ambient, rock and progressive emotions, yet the album is still very particular in its own way. But as the other album, it reflects a lot the emotions of the musician, emotions which will flood through you too depending on your own mood. For sure there will be a track for your good and bad days, no matter when no matter how. It’s a perfect CD to relax or to want to rock a bit. And this is without to forget to mention that the sound quality is awesome ! But honestly, I’ve never been disappointed with Joop’s music yet.
In some words, I think anyone would be very pleased with a CD such as “Workshop” in its collection because it’s not sticking to only ONE style of music, but to many ones mixed together. Who could ask for more ? I can’t do otherwise than suggest it to people.
Again, I would rate this work 10/10 for its high complexity and brilliant composing. Joop Wolters’ third solo album “Out of Order” is supposed to be released in 2007, so check for that !
Reviewed by Vikie Martel on November 21st, 2006