Artist:  Jennifer Batten
   Title: Whatever
   Label: Lion Music

Jennifer Batten is one of the most respected female guitar virtuoso’s around, what am I saying she is thee most respected female guitar players around.

And her rise to fame came when she became the guitarist on Michael Jackson’s touring band back in 1987 and since then Jennifer has released two solo albums and appeared with the likes of Jeff Beck on his albums and also in his touring band. But at last her third album entitled Whatever finally makes an appearance and again she mixes it up in her very own unique style as she brings in Hip Hop, Jazz Fusions, Traditional Rock as well as Native American and African sounds on an album that once again cements her as the best female virtuoso guitar player around.

The album opens up with ‘Ass Whoopin'’ as she is joined by Jon Clark who was also a guitarist in Jackson’s band during the Bad tour. But here Clarke add a comic vocal over Battens guitar playing which mixes hip hop with a jazz fusion which in itself is quite unique an is a great foundation for the rest of the album.

Things progress with ‘Ricochet’ again Batten takes the bull by the horns with this experimental soundscape blending in some sonic electronic elements in this twisted electroguitar powder keg of styles.

Where as 'Off The Deep End’ brings in that tribal African feel with the chanting opening before Batten take the six string by the neck and squeezes ever inch of melody out of it.

With the title track ‘Whatever’ Batten take a stab at the US youth culture and its destruction of the language as every word that seem to come out of the youth of today when you ask them to do something is WHATEVER! this one again shows of Batten’s fret burning skills as she blends sample of people saying “whatever” with frenzied licks and intricate melodies.

This quite extensive collection of Batten’s guitar styles and licks is taken a step further as she takes up the acoustic guitar for ‘Fearless’ before returning back to her beloved electric for the buzz intro of ‘Hooligans Holiday’ that leads into the soaring harmonics of ‘In The Aftermath\’ which is without a doubt the highlight of the album.

Keeping with the tribal feel this time it’s the Native American soundings of Herman Begay which Batten has interwoven with some quite stunning guitar work once again for 'Run With It', this is another shining example of why she is regarded as the finest female virtuoso guitar player of the modern age.

The quality just keeps on coming as the album reaches its climax with ‘Cupids Arrow’ and finally rounding off with ‘Inner Journey’ which rounds off another great guitar album from Batten on once again cements her name in the anoles of guitar legend.  



1 Ass Whoopin'
2 Ricochet
3 Off The Deep End
4 Whatever
5 Fearless
6 Hooligans Holiday
7 The Aftermath
8 Run With It
9 Cupids Arrow
10 Inner Journey



All content copyright of The Mayfair Mall Zine unless otherwise stated.