The Ramblin' Ambassadors Avanti

From the ashes of one of Canada’s most beloved instrumental bands, Huevos Rancheros, come Calgary’s Ramblin’ Ambassadors. The good news is that Brent Cooper, the main man from Huevos is still at the helm here, and there are still lots of his Link Wray-influenced twangers present on the nine-song Avanti. These cuts, like "Lungbucket" and "Hawgtied,” are upbeat rockers in the style we’ve come to expect from Cooper and they all sound great, thanks to the steroid-pumped production style. The even better news is that the Ambassadors also convey a lot of deep atmosphere here, like on the lonely desert intro "Sixty Seconds to What?,” "Dead Man’s Flat’s" and "The Hairless Cat,” utilising trumpet and organ to great effect. Avanti very successfully manages to blend the best elements of the Friends of Dean Martinez dreamy spaghetti Western rock and blazing surf/instro-rock. With a fresh, energised record like this coming out, it’s safe to say that instrumental rock is still alive and kicking. (Mint)