Alex Skolnick Trio

Alex Skolnick Trio

 New York City, New York, USA
BandJazzMetal

Hardcore metal fans will know Alex Skolnick's 80's thrash metal guitar sounds. Taking a break from metal, invented shrazz... a mixture of shred + jazz. Adding the drums and double bass elements of energetic young musicians delivers the perfect percussion delivering something for everyone!

Biography

THE ALEX SKOLNICK TRIO

Introducing 'Last Day In Paradise' (Magnatude Records), the third album from the Alex Skolnick Trio. It consists of seven original compositions along with three arrangements of hard rock 'standards,' (a concept upon which the trio has built a strong reputation as an instrumental group that appeals to straight ahead jazz fans and rock fans alike). Feeling the inspiration of European jazz and other influences,the group has now gone beyond the limitations of the traditional guitar trio format on many of the songs, incorporating electronic loops ('Last Day In Paradise'), vocal melodies('Mercury Retrograde') and slide guitar ('Western Sabbath Stomp'). There are special effects, bowed bass tracks and other studio embellishments, resulting in their most original and cutting edge album to date. The new album also includes a Latin version of the Testament song Practice What You Preach (which Alex originally co-wrote) and a live electronica inspired version of Rush' classic 'Tom Sawyer.'

The Alex Skolnick Trio was born in 2001. A heavy metal guitar hero with the San Francisco based group Testament, Alex had decided to leave the Bay Area, move to New York, soak up the jazz scene and go back to school to earn his music degree from New School University. It was here that he met a young drum prodigy named Matt ‘Zebar’ Zebroski who, as it turned out, had been a Testament fan as a youth in Pittsburgh. The two began rehearsing regularly, practicing standards and reviewing homework assignments. Within a few months, they hit upon a magic formula: songs of their youth, re-harmonized and revamped to incorporate high level modern improvisation. A short time later, the trio had versions of Kiss, Aerosmith, Ozzy Osbourne, The Who and more,as well as original compositions and were covering a wide range of musical styles: swing, funk, Latin and moments of John McLaughlin/Jimi Hendrix/Miles Davis inspired intensity.

Their debut recording "Goodbye To Romance: Standards For A New Generation“ (Skol Productions) was released in March 2002. Anticipating a less than enthusiastic response from mainstream jazz media, the group was pleasantly surprised when, less than a month later, an entire column was devoted to the album in Billboard (Jazz Notes; April, 2002). Within a year,Goodbye To Romance had been awarded 4½ stars by Downbeat (March, 2003) , was featured in magazines such as Jazziz (March and April, 2003), The Village Voice (February 26th, 2003) and more, had reached #26 on the JazzWeek radio charts (August, 2002) and was listed as a ‘Top Seller’ on the on-line retail site CDBaby.Alex and the Trio performed at such notable music industry conferences as CMJ (New York, NY, 2002) and at SXSW (Austin, TX, 2003) and toured throughout the country to packed houses in such places as Cleveland, Boston, Chicago, San Francisco, Texas, New York City and the Rochester International Jazz Festival. They've since appeared live on XM Satellite Radio, Fox Morning News, Brother Wease, and many other radio stations including WNEW (New York), WCPN (Cleveland) and WGMC (Rochester).

The next trio release was in 'Transformation', group's debut for major indy label Magnatude, and the first with new bassist Nathan Peck. 'Transformation' continued the concept of the first album, with arrangements of music byDeep Purple, Judas Priest, Pink Floyd and others, but also placed more emphasis on the groups growing repertoire of original compositions. Great reviews followed, including Jambands.com who said 'By taking charge and writing more originals tunes on this album than the first offering, the group has been able to grow exponentially. AllAboutJazz.com compared Skolnick to jazz/rock pioneer Larry Coryell: 'Like Coryell, Skolnick demonstrates that translating the energy of rock to a jazz context can be a more subtle thing, showing that you can imbue more traditional trappings of swing, modal playing and richer harmony with an edge that doesn't spoil their essential purity. Transformation is a surprising record that succeeds on many levels and proves that it is indeed possible to shift gears mid-career and sound like you've been doing it all your life.

'Last Day In Paradise' begins a whole new chapter for Alex Skolnick trio. Many of the songs reflect a collective feeling of disillusionment with the state of the world: on the liner notes Alex writes: The title 'Last Day In Paradise' represents a philosophical outlook. While every era has had its share of troubling global events, what has happened in the world in the last few years, on both a political level and a social one, has been more disturbing than any period I can recall in my life. Indeed, it's time we learn to live everyday as if it is our Last Day In Paradise.'

Alex Skolnick
Skol Productions

"Yes, here a former metalhead is reborn as a heady jazz guitarist in the Metheny-Scofield mold" Jazziz, April '03

"The long-ha

Discography

Goodbye to Romance: Standards for a New Generation (Skol Productions, 2002)
Transformation (Magnitude , 2004)
Last Day in Paradise (Magnitude, 2007)
"Last Day in Paradise"/"Mercury in Retrograde" (EP)

Discography also includes Alex Skolnick featured in Testament, Attention Deficit, The Trans Siberian Orchestra and as a featured guest on cuts on recent CD's by Lamb of God, Necro and tribute albums including Rush

Set List

These three love to play live and if afforded the time to do several sets will play it all! If time is limited they'll play a healthy dose of originals and covers, often closing with an amped-up version of Black Sabbath's War Pigs, Alex diving down to the effects pedals to the delight of the hardcore metal fans.

Detroit Rock City (Kiss)
Dream On (Aerosmith)
No One Like You (Scorpions)
Goodbye to Romance (Ozzy Osbourne)
Still Loving You (Scorpions)
Skol Blues (Skolnick)
Pinball Wizard (The Who)
Ofri (Skolnick)
War Pigs (Black Sabbath)
Transformation (Skolnick)
Electric Eye (Tipton/Halford/Downing)
Fear of Flying (Skolnick)
Money (Waters)
Both Feet In (Zebroski)
Scorch (Skolnick)
Blackout (Schenker/Meine/Rarebell/Kittelson)
IMV/The Trooper (Skolnick/Harris)
No Fly Zone (Skolnick)
Don't Talk to Strangers (Dio)
Highway Star (Blackmore/Gillian/Glover/Lord/Paice)
Mercury in Retrograde (Skolnick)
Last Day in Paradise (Skolnick)
Tom Sawyer (Lifeson/Lee/Pert/Dubois)
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