Flemington rocker Christine Martucci celebrates CD release Sunday
by Bob Makin
Christine Martucci is one of New Jersey's most energetic rockers, and, thankfully, that energy is captured on her indie debut CD, "Mama Says." Such classic rock-inspired anthems as the opening "Can You Feel It," the single "Hearts on Fire," the fired-up "Full Steam Ahead," the peace-seeking "She Don't Know," the passionate "Release Me" and the surging "Home" will get the crowd up on its feet and its fists in the air on Sunday for a CD release party at Havana's in New Hope.
While Martucci's songs sometimes sound the same and there isn't much range in her high-voltage vocals, like her inspirations, Melissa Etheridge and Janis Joplin, she has a rough 'n' tumble charm and strong lyrical sense that's easy for a classic-rock fan to enjoy. She isn't breaking new ground with an original sound, but like much of the Hunterdon County music scene, she draws on classic-rock influences with great determination, passion and enthusiasm. The results are extremely entertaining, especially live.
Martucci works a crowd into a frenzy like a show-biz veteran. With her face reddened and sweating, hair matted and vocals roaring from her soul like strange fruit, she reminded me so much of Joplin, that I couldn't help smiling throughout her set.
As far as "Mama Says" goes, producer Matt Angus can place another feather in his sonic cap. He's crafted another great rock record by a Hunterdon County female singer-songwriter. "Mama Says" makes a fine follow-up to Kathy Phillips' excellent "Sway." Both albums would deserve commercial airplay if a New Jersey radio station that had the guts to play them. This is especially true of Martucci's powerfully poppy "Can You Feel It" and "Hearts on Fire" and the topical "She Don't Know."
Martucci has the potential to take her act far beyond the Garden State. She's a finalist in the Cabo Wabo Meltdown. If she gets enough votes at www.hardrock.com/promo/cabowabo, she'll get to open for Sammy Hagar at his Cabo Wabo club in Cabo San Lucas, Mexico.
Sharing the bill at Havana's will be the fun rock act Jody Joseph & the Average Joes. For more info about Christine Martucci, visit www.ChristineMartucci.com.
What you can do this weekend:
What: Christine Martucci CD release party
When: 3-6 p.m. Sunday
Where: Havana's, New Hope, Pa.
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